Newly Diagnosed With Prostate Cancer: Day To Day Living
Day-to-day living from the Survivorship A to Z point of view is a catch-all for those parts of your life affected by your prostate cancer diagnosis that are not treated in specific subjects such as Managing Your Medical Care. For Information about each the following subjects, see the other sections of this document.
- Decide who to tell about your condition, and what to tell them.
- Consider telling people closest to you now. Perhaps tell the person who you most expect to respond in a helpful way. (It may be useful to call a hotline and rehearse telling loved ones by sayng the words "I have breast cancer." Your response to saying the words for the first tme may surprise you.)
- Think about how to respond to their reaction, including strong emotions such as anger or helplessness.
- Hold off telling co-workers except to the extent you have to in order to get the time to get tests and explore options.
- Start making plans for your needs during treatment. For example, who will:
- Take over house chores?
- Take the kids to school?
- Do the shopping?
- Think about family and friends as part of your health care team.
- If you have underage children:
- Tell them about your diagnosis in an age appropriate manner.
- Use the word "cancer." If you don't use the word, and they hear it from someone else, they may lose trust in you.
- Start monitoring their behavior.
- Learn to purchase, use, store and dispose of drugs wisely.
- The way you have been buying and using drugs may not be the best way.
- Free drugs may be available if needed.
- Realize that drugs and treatments do not work in a vacuum.
- Adopt a healthy lifestyle. Start to think of the food you eat, the exercise you get, your rest/sleep, stress reduction, and even proper care of your mouth as steps you can take to make treatments and drugs most effective.
- Do what you can to avoid unnecessary infections.
- Check travel plans with your cancer doctor. For example, where to go, how you get there, activities at each destination.
- The time planning takes is well worth it.
- Once at your destination, take appropriate precautions.
- If there is a possibility you will lose your hair, consider buying a wig now or at least saving a sample in case you want to buy a wig later. Also consider cutting your hair off rather than waiting for it to fall out.
- Keep in mind that you will still be able to have a sexual side to your life - even if you lose a breast and decide not to have it reconstructed.
- If you feel fatigued, there are techniques to help get through the day. For example, schedule activities for the time of day you usually feel better.
- Learn about local resources that may be available for you.
- Keep in mind that there is no reason to be in pain.Many doctors under treat pain. If your doctor won't take care of your needs, there are pain specialists you can consult.