With all of the medical advances of the past decades,
cancer is no longer an automatic death sentence, the American Cancer Society says.
Someone diagnosed with many forms of cancer today has a good chance of living with the disease for many years.
Some types of ovarian cancer, lymphoma and leukemia should be treated as chronic illnesses, in a similar way that we treat heart disease or diabetes, the ACS says.
The society suggests how people can better deal with the disease:
- Be informed. Learn as much as you can about your cancer and how you can improve your health. Being better informed will give you a better sense of being in control.
- But accept that you do not have complete control of your disease.
- Face your fears, but don’t dwell on them.
- Express your feelings to a loved one or counselor. If you are open with your emotions, you may feel less worried and more empowered.
- Enjoy the present, rather than dwelling on an uncertain future or a difficult past.
- Make time to do what you want.
- Work toward having a positive attitude. Identify things you feel grateful about.
- Stay as healthy as possible by eating well and exercising. But rest often.
- Explore different ways to relax, including enjoying time alone and with others.