When a loved one is diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer, families may be unsure of the best ways to care for them at home. Supportive cancer care for mesothelioma will pay particular attention to lung health and look for strategies to lessen the disease’s symptoms and adverse effects from treatment.
The following advice can help you care for a loved one who has mesothelioma cancer. Just being there for them can be a lot to take, so remember that looking after yourself will make you a better carer.
Create a Support Team
Making a support team is one of the finest first moves a family can do following a cancer diagnosis. It’s difficult for one individual to provide all the necessary care for someone who has cancer on their own.
To organise the care required for a mesothelioma patient, a team of people will be required. Ask for help from your extended family, friends, neighbours, and community members. Make use of Lotsa Helping Hands’ Calendar to schedule meals, travel to appointments, and other areas of care.
The primary carers’ friends and family can directly support people who are providing care. For instance, in-laws can help out with domestic tasks like laundry, cleaning, and dishwashing to free up the primary carers’ time.
Focus on Pulmonary Care
For those who have mesothelioma cancer, lung health is of vital importance. The pulmonary symptoms will probably alter or worsen as the malignancy spreads. Breathing difficulties, dyspnea, coughing, and breathing pain are all common and can be treated.
To keep patients at ease, there are pulmonary therapies and drugs available. To improve breathing, several drugs can assist open airways. The discomfort brought on by tumours pressing against the chest wall can be reduced with pain medication. Patients who want to enhance their lung function might engage with pulmonary therapists to learn breathing exercises and methods. To find out more, inquire with your oncologist about being sent to a pulmonary therapist.
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Consider All Treatment Options
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are the norm for treating mesothelioma. Only a small percentage of patients receive a diagnosis that allows them to have surgery, although this is not common.
Many sufferers of mesothelioma cancer are interested in taking part in clinical trials. Through these trials, patients can obtain cutting-edge therapies and novel medications. For instance, mesothelioma is the target of several novel immunotherapy medications now being studied. These immunotherapy medications can lengthen life by reducing or managing cancers, and they can even lessen chemotherapy adverse effects.
Reduce Side Effects of Treatment
In order to keep patients comfortable, it’s crucial to manage both cancer-related symptoms and therapy side effects. It’s critical to notify your oncologist straight away of any new symptoms or adverse effects of treatment. There are medications and therapies available to treat side effects, and it’s critical to deal with them as quickly as possible.
A significant recovery period of four to six weeks will be required of patients who are candidates for surgery. Following surgery, fatigue, muscular weakness, and widespread discomfort are frequent.
Aside from exhaustion, chemotherapy can occasionally produce nausea or vomiting. Anti-nausea medications available today are quite successful at preventing and managing nausea brought on by chemotherapy. Additionally, there are several effective natural remedies for nausea. Controlling energy levels throughout the day and eating a diet rich in protein to promote recovery are key components of managing fatigue.
There aren’t many adverse effects from radiation therapy, however some patients may have skin irritation that feels like a sunburn. Topical creams like aloe or something your doctor suggests can be helpful.
Consider Emotional Health
A cancer diagnosis can have a significant negative impact on mental health. Even strong, robust people experience fear after receiving a cancer diagnosis. Some people may experience intense sadness.
It is unrealistic to expect to learn how to manage these emotions over night. Learning how to manage strong emotions takes time. It’s a nightmare to try to do it alone. To deal with difficult emotions, cancer patients require help from others. For coping mechanisms, speaking with a mental health professional can be beneficial.
Mental health professionals highly advise joining a cancer support group. Patients and family members have the opportunity to interact with those going through similar experiences. This association normalises the experience and can make patients and loved ones feel less isolated. In a support group, patients and their families experience compassion and support that is uncommon elsewhere, and the bonds formed there are enduring.