WHERE CAN I FIND SUPPORT?
Why is it important to be involved in a support group?
This not only helps patients cope with the illness, but it also helps them rebuild their confidence, get them to make positive changes in their diet and exercise, and give them a positive perception of life and hope after the dreadful diagnosis. Patients who join support groups are found to be happier, less stressed, and have enhanced immune system (seen as an increase in T-cells, a type of cells that has immune functions).
There are support groups all over the world, some of which charge a small fee, but most of them are free of charge.
There are support groups that you attend physically and there are also support groups online. You can ask your physician to recommend or help you search for support groups near your residence. You can find them in your local hospitals, breast cancer clinics, national cancer society, and any of those sorts.
In Malaysia, we have Breast Cancer Welfare Association in Selangor and the National Cancer Society has branches all over the nation.
WHAT CAN I DO IF A FAMILY MEMBER OF MINE HAS BREAST CANCER?
Every family member plays a part in helping their relative cope with cancer. Dealing with cancer is not easy. There are emotional stress, lethargy, physical weakness, and psychological stress that cancer patients have to deal with everyday of their lives.
Family members can start by helping them out with their daily activities, spending more time with them, give emotional support, and if capable, help them cope with psychological stress, by taking them to a counsellor or psychologist. Children are also capable of helping by means of brightening the lives of cancer patients which are seemingly gloomy.
Life is short, so we must seize everyday and enjoy it to the fullest. We all know the first part to it, but how much are we doing the latter part?
No family member is left out when it comes to helping cancer patients cope with their illness, and no cancer patients would like to be lonely in facing difficult times. At least, by making them happy and less stressed, when it is their time to leave, they would depart peacefully with no regrets, having known that their family has truly loved and cared for them.