Cervical cancer can be very daunting to a person. Once cancer is detected, the person goes through a lot of invasive surgeries, chemotherapies, radiation, and medications, which are not only physically draining but can also change the whole perspective of how one looks at their body. However, once you have recovered from it, coping and becoming your normal self once again becomes important. It is a challenge in the beginning and the knowledge that life is uncertain always stays at the back of your mind.
Thus, to make a new beginning, you will have to make a few lifestyle changes. Here are some tips to help you make a fresh start:
Choose to be healthy.
When you were diagnosed with cervical cancer, maybe you had some time to look back on the things you did for you to have this kind of disease. Maybe you’re regretting that you could’ve made healthier choices in the past rather than smoking or drinking too much alcohol.
It’s never too late to make healthier choices in life. Yes, you have had cancer, but you can still live your life healthier than before. Make choices that will bring positive effects to your health and overall well-being. Eat better and exercise more. Give up smoking and cut down your alcohol consumption. Keep yourself away from any kind of stress as much as possible.
Eat healthy, nutritious foods.
Eating right can be tough during and after cancer treatment due to the side effects brought about by the therapy you had. Nausea may cause some problems and your sense of taste may change because of the treatment. You may also lose weight since you may not feel like eating.
Taste problems, eating problems, and weight changes may be frustrating, but these problems get better in time. Start by eating healthy foods. Nutritious foods have long-term benefits that are very good for your health. Always maintain a healthy weight by eating a healthy diet. Limit the things that could increase the risk of cancer to come back.
Rest when you need to.
Cancer can drain out all the energy from your body. Having cancer will often make you tired, even when you do simple things. Cervical cancer affects your private parts and they need to heal after treatment. Therefore, listen to the indications that your body gives. Do not overwork yourself. Give your body a time to heal and rest whenever you need to until you feel energized.
Have someone around to help you.
It is quite normal for a person to feel pressured or emotionally drained after a cervical cancer treatment. That is why it is best to always have a dear friend or a relative to stick around to make you feel better. It might just be a short gossip over coffee or watch a movie together, but these moments of distractions are necessary. They help you deal with the after-effects of the treatment in a better way. Thus, do not compare yourself with other cervical cancer patients. Just take your time and have a few close people around.
Plan for short vacations.
There would have been days that would have scared you to the core. The disease might have flooded your mind. However, a short vacation or trip, maybe to a hill station or to a resort, where you can observe nature and enjoy yourself, can be really refreshing. Therefore, plan short trips and try to look forward to the trip.
Stay connected to your partner.
After cervical cancer, it is quite common for many women to be scared, particularly in going back to having normal sex. The pain, loss of desire, and healing time make it difficult to have normal sex once again. However, you can always feel better when you are connected to your partner. Kissing, cuddling, or just talking to your partner can make you feel better. Always communicating with your partner will even give you the needed emotional stability. Once you feel better, you can ask a specialist to help you further.
Talk to other cervical cancer patients.
Having undergone the treatment and side effects of cervical cancer, you are at your best phase to talk to a few others who are facing similar problems. Therefore, join a cancer forum or visit the hospital where you were treated and pass on your experience of battling cancer to others.
Giving them hope and letting them know that it is not impossible to overcome the situation can give them strength. Moreover, allow them to share their fears with you, as you can understand the condition much better than any other person.
Start exercising slowly.
It is normal that your endurance, muscle strength, and fitness decline during treatment. If you plan to go back to your previous level of physical activity or you want to be involved in other activities, make sure that you start slowly and become fit for your situation. Do not push yourself too hard. Before engaging in any physical activities such as sports, talk to your doctor first. Discuss your plans to ensure that what you want to do is safe for you.
You can also practice exercises like yoga, which includes slow stretching exercises and simple breathing techniques that will calm your mind and soothe your body.
Physical activities not only improve your physical health but emotional health as well. The benefits of doing physical activities include:
- An improved cardiovascular health
- Keeping a healthy weight
- Reduces fatigue
- Makes your muscles stronger
- Boosts energy and increases body metabolism
- Helps decrease depression and anxiety
- Improves self-esteem
Most importantly, doing physical activities help lower the risk of developing cancer.
The Bottom Line
Just because you were affected by cancer, don’t lose hope in life. The fact that you could fight a deadly disease indicates that you are a strong-willed person. Thus, keep cancer as a lesson in life and try to incorporate as many activities as possible at a slow pace. Always undergo regular checkups with your doctor. Keep your private parts clean and maintain a good hygiene level.