Today is World Mental Health Day. In this article we share mental health advice for people impacted by cancer by people impacted by cancer.
When it comes to cancer care, mental health support often takes a back seat. According to a survey we carried out in 2021, 72% of people impacted by cancer experienced a decline in mental health and 92% feel the need for more support.
Mental Health is a hot topic these days, with advice coming at us from every angle. What mental health advice is better than that coming from people who’ve experienced cancer first-hand? That’s why we asked our community members for the mental health tips and tricks they’ve used to support their wellbeing while going through cancer.
Here’s what they had to say:
- Take time to connect with family and friends – there are mental health benefits to talking about your feelings when going through cancer. Spending time talking with loved ones was the number one mental health tip our community shared.
- Get out for a walk if you can – give yourself time to take a break outside and disconnect. No matter how far you go, many said the headspace this gave them was important for their wellbeing.
- Set a new focus for each day, no matter how ‘small’, and make it happen – when going through cancer, everything can feel overwhelming. Give yourself one small task each day to tick off your list.This sense of accomplishment, no matter what it is, helps lift your mood.
- Put on your favourite music and take some time to enjoy it – allow the music to be a little escape from the day-to-day.
- Exercise regularly if you can – moving your body can be tough when going through cancer, especially when recovering from treatment. See what gentle movement you can incorporate into your day to help maintain your mental health.
- Cuddling and spending time with pets – another very popular piece of mental health advice from our community.
- Remember to take each day as it comes – you don’t have to tackle everything all at once. Set intentions and goals that are reasonable to achieve that day.
- Laughter – lots of it!
- Stay away from Google! No good has ever come from typing aliments into the search. If you’re worried about something to do with your health or diagnosis, don’t be afraid to speak to your medical team.
- Connect with others who understand – sometimes, you just need to talk to someone who can really relate to what you’ve been through. Our community is made up of over 40,000 people who have been impacted by cancer and understand what it’s like.
Mental health is a vital aspect of our wellbeing and 92% of our community have reported a need for mental health support after a cancer diagnosis. You are not alone. Join the community to connect with others who have similar lived experiences and do something today for your own mental health.