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House Call: Emotional affects of cancer pt. 2

Published: Jul. 26, 2021 at 10:46 AM EDT
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Welcome back to UHC’s HouseCall on WDTV. Tonight is part two of our special series on cancer, as we look at how cancer can affect us emotionally. Joining us again, this week is Gretchen Hennigan, nurse navigator at the Cecil B. Highland Jr. and Barbara B. Highland Cancer Center at United Hospital Center.

1). Do cancer patients feel a sense of guilt and play the blame game for a cancer diagnosis?

· Yes, but they should not.

· Causes of cancer are due to many factors: genetic, environmental, life-style, and age factors. Some cancers have no known cause.

· Reframe the question, “Why did this happen?” to “What is the plan?” This can provide hope and focus attention to the goals of treatment.

2). Should you tell others about your feelings?

· Yes, especially your family. Discussing your feelings with support system or family members is beneficial to your mental wellbeing.

· Your family may also have similar feelings as well.

· Open & honest discussions about your feelings can actually decrease stress.

3). What if you do not have any family to talk to about your diagnosis?

· Reach out to your nurse navigator. Together, we can create a healthy support system that will help you through your cancer journey.

o Counseling

o Clergy (UHC or Community Congregation)

o On-line connections

· Resources for one-to-one support with a similar cancer survivor.

o UHC counselor (alert your navigator to arrange)

o https://imermanangels.org/

o https://cancare.org/support/

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