When a friend or family member is diagnosed with cancer you’ll want to find out how you can support them. Thankfully, there are countless ways you can show your support.
Today we’ll be sharing 4 of the most effective ways to support someone who has cancer—big and small—that are bound to make a difference in their life and yours.
1. Educate Yourself on their Diagnosis
You cannot properly support someone if you don’t know the first thing about the type of cancer they have been diagnosed with. Do they have stomach cancer or lung cancer? Gently find out the details of their diagnosis and learn absolutely everything you can about it.
Many people fear the worst when they hear the word cancer. And we are in no way downplaying the seriousness of cancer or implying that you should take any diagnosis lightly. We’re simply stating that a cancer diagnosis is not always a death sentence. Thanks to the marvel of modern medicine, certain cancers are more treatable than others.
Based on 5-year relative survival rates the most treatable types of cancer include the following:
- Breast cancer
- Hodgkin lymphoma
- Testicular cancer
- Thyroid cancer
Knowing more about the patient’s condition will help you provide the right kind of emotional support.
2. Take Charge of the Grocery Shopping
Shopping might not sound important, but it is. The simple act of assisting with grocery shopping is a huge help.
Grocery shopping on behalf of your friend or family member is actually one of the best ways you can support them. This is because you’ll not just be lightening their load, you’ll also be ensuring that they are eating the proper foods to assist them before, during and after treatment.
If you can afford to cover the cost of the grocery shop yourself that will also be most appreciated as having cancer is undoubtedly expensive.
3. Investigate Ways You Can Help Them Heal
We’ve discussed the benefits of radiation therapy in the past and the types of cancers it can be used to treat. If you have a friend or family member who is currently undergoing radiation therapy, you’ll know that its side effects can be pretty harsh.
Radiation therapy’s side effects range from burns to bowel dysfunction and these wounds make the life of the patient far more difficult. Do some research on radiation wound care and find out what steps you can take to make them more comfortable.
4. Get Yourself Some Support Too
Supporting someone who has cancer is not easy, no matter who they are to you or what stage of their diagnosis, recovery or treatment they are in. It’s incredibly important to make sure that you too are supported. Always remember that you cannot pour from an empty cup.
Consider joining a support group for those whose loved ones are cancer patients. This group could be a physical group in your area or even an online forum. If you feel you need to seek professional help remember that there is ZERO shame in doing so.
When someone has cancer, they need all the support they can get from all who are able to give it. Take our advice and choose any of the four ways we listed as your way of showing support.
Remember that your support can be small, but the impact will be big.