Sunday, December 8, 2013

Relieve Breast Cancer Stress With These Healing Techniques

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Statistics show over 1 million women worldwide will be given this diagnosis over the next year. The good news is there has been tremendous improvement in the diagnosis and treatment of this illness. The bad news is that chances are you will know someone close who is battling breast cancer.

The Link between Stress and Cancer

Most women take on task after task and never equate the stress this causes with ill health. This health burnout comes from juggling family life, career and job advancement anxieties, friends and relationship problems while not allowing enough time for personal needs and relaxation. This woman is a prime candidate for a stress related major illness to occur sooner or later.

The link between increasingly taking on tasks, the stress they place on the body, the body's fatigue and breakdown of the immune system sets the stage for increase in the production of abnormal cells. The immune system is the body's natural defense against illness and contains and destroys cancer cells. A weakened immune system leaves the body at its lowest point to combat these abnormal cells. Now we have the optimal conditions for cancerous growth.

The Mind-Body Healing Connection

Of critical importance to cancer patients are the effects of emotional stress to suppress the immune system, compromising the body's natural defenses against cancer. If you are diagnosed, steps must be taken to strengthen your belief in your body's defenses in treating this cancerous growth.

Stress Relief Techniques for Healing

Learning to relax, visualization for wellness and self-help skills in nutrition and simple exercises will help you own the process of getting well. A regular relaxation routine helps reduce fear, anger, depression and the effect that tension and stress place on the body.

Exercise, any exercise, even if it's only lifting the arm or pointing the toes in a routine and repetitive daily regimen produces "feel good" endorphins which increases the feeling of well being.

Visualization is used to create mental images of the desired health outcome. It is a very focused tool used as a weapon to fight and win against disease. Below is a powerful mental imagery process devised by the Simonton Cancer Counseling and Research Center for its cancer patients:

A. Begin by Practicing a Relaxation Technique:

Sit in a quiet room. Loosen or remove all restricting clothes, shoes, belts, etc. Begin to focus on your breathing. Take several deep breaths, inhaling and exhaling slowly. Close your eyes and mentally moving from head to toe, think and relax each part of your body.

B. Then Begin the Mental Imagery Process:

(1) Visualize the cancer cells as weak in whatever way that appears to you.
(2) Visualize treatment as a strong and powerful symbol in whatever form that symbol takes.
(3) Visualize the healthy cells and white cells invincible, able to defend the body and defeat the weak cancer cells.
(4)Visualize the dead cells being flushed from the body
(5) Visualize/imagine a picture of you healthy and energetic and fulfilling your life's purpose.

Practice three times a day for ten or fifteen minutes.

This is Your Life

Managing stress in combination with your medical treatment, are steps you can take to change the feeling of helpless victim to that of a person in charge of her life. Become an active participant in your recovery process and all medical decisions. Ask your doctor (s) plenty of questions - and seek answers. Research alternatives.

Positive reinforcement is vital to your recovery efforts. Seek out compassionate, supportive people during this process. Set goals for three months, six months and one year to increase the positive outlook that comes with having something to look forward to.