The Impact of Stress on Lymphoma
As with any serious diagnoses, dealing with lymphoma adds many stressors to life. The news of cancer will cause stress levels to rise a few notches, no matter the severity. That stress is only going to grow.
How is it going to affect the patient’s future personally, professionally and financially? As more and more realities come into view, and decisions have to be made about treatment, drugs, options, and a whole new life, stress will continue to rise. For years now, the question has been posed if stress can make cancer, especially a blood cancer like lymphoma, worse.
The ultimate answer is that there is no conclusive study that either supports or contradicts the belief that stress makes lymphoma worse. With the studies that have occurred over the years however, there have been many revelations that lend weight to the theory. At the heart of it all is the basic fact that stress can wreak havoc on a healthy body, let alone one that is trying to fight cancer. Stress alone effects the body in some horrible ways, and those adverse effects are only magnified in a body whose white blood cells are under attack.
Psychological stress and the body
Stress is not just a word or a feeling, but is an actual physical factor in your body. During times of psychological stress, the body releases different hormones, all of which affect the body differently. In a healthy body, this can lead to a suppressed immune system and getting sick as a result of the physical stress your body is under due to the psychological stress. In a person already struggling with lymphoma, a suppressed immune system can lead to even more negative effects on the body.
When under immense periods of stress, the hormones your body releases can affect you in many different ways, from rising blood pressure to increased heart rate. It can even cause blood sugar to rise. Though these side effects may be useful in certain situations, such as helping a person to have increased strength or speed when needed, overall the body is not meant to have hormones released excessively on a regular basis. Chronic stress is proven to lead to many issues over time, such as an increased chance for fertility struggles, digestive issues, urinary tract problems, an increased chance to develop viral diseases and a weakened immune system, not to mention struggles with depression, headaches, sleeping issues, and increased anxiety.
Read on to learn more about how stress affects lymphoma, and healthy ways to cope.