A cancer diagnosis of a friend or family member can be a confusing and emotional experience. If a loved one has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, one of the first steps is understanding how you can offer support as well as how you can receive support for yourself.
While it can be challenging to provide support for a patient, here are some tips:
- Don’t allow the cancer diagnosis to change your relationship: Treat the person with cancer as you normally would. Showing your interest and listening without being demanding can ease a patient’s cancer experience.
- Learn about prostate cancer: To ensure your loved one has all the information they need to make informed decisions, be sure to educate yourself on the main facts about prostate cancer and treatment options.
- Connect them with a community: Help your loved one build relationships with other cancer patients, survivors and physicians to help them navigate through this experience.
- Seek help for yourself: Personal upkeep is necessary when caring for a loved one with prostate cancer. It is easier to maintain a positive attitude with enough sleep and a healthy lifestyle. Taking advantage of yoga, meditation or talking with a friend can help families and caregivers navigate the treatment process.
The American Cancer Society offers additional tips on ways to offer support for prostate cancer patients. The Prostate Cancer Foundation is another great source that provides resources to help men and their families better understand prostate cancer and how to stay healthy.
This is not intended as medical advice to replace the expertise and judgment of your health care team. It is intended to help you and your family make informed decisions, together with your doctor.