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First post - struggling with the anxiety



  • Milly21Milly21 Member Posts: 109
    I had episodes of anxiety and panic attacks before finding out I had breast cancer after being diagnosed it was amplified,in months following diagnosis I suffered badly lost 10 kg ,I was really struggling ,my oncologist ended up prescribing me Ativan a low dose,it helped me greatly,I took for about 2 months while having treatment. 
  • mtansyzmtansyz Member Posts: 10
    I was a naturally anxious person before cancer...unfortunately it kind of went into overdrive once I was diagnosed / going through treatment. I found therapy helpful (I was referred by my breast care nurse), I also take medication before I walk into the chemotherapy day unit (or before I have any kind of medical procedure), walking helped...I also spent a lot of time pulling weeds in my garden. I found that doing something physical can really help shift that tightness in the chest / panic...

    I have three young kids, which can be challenging at times...as they don't really understand that you are busy freaking out about cancer...they just want their hugs / to be fed etc ;) But on the other hand, its sometimes a good distraction. 

    Best Wishes!!!
  • tsjlhmtsjlhm BrisbaneMember Posts: 14
    Thanks everyone for your support. I’ve seen oncologist and surgeon now and you’re right. I feel a bit better having a plan. Lots of tests and getting port this week, chemo starting early next week.
    New hair cut today. 
    Amazing how life has changed in one week. Deep Breath. One day at a time.
  • Shellshocked2018_Shellshocked2018_ Fleurieu Peninsula , SAMember Posts: 280
    All the best, having a port is a great idea.
    Drink plenty of water/fluids during chemo, you are being very proactive and taking control by getting your new hair cut. That’s something I decided to do to be in control, having my head shaved a few weeks into chemotherapy.
    If you need head scarves have a look on eBay they have some great ones at a good price.
    Where I live I had access to a wig library, you could borrow a wig for free. I didn’t use a wig as I was comfortable wearing head scarves. If your interested speak to your breast care nurse.
    Also speak with your breast care nurse as there is some funding from cancer council to assist with a bill of your choice to a value $? I know they did here in SA, so check with your breast care nurse for your state.
    Also visit your GP to have an assessment for a care plan for chronic disease, this will give you a total of five visits to a Chiro/Physio/podiatrist/psychology at a heavily reduced rate every year.
    You have got this! We are all here for you, any questions ask away.
    Stay positive 

    Sending hugs xx
  • kmakmkmakm MelbourneMember Posts: 7,941
    Op shops are great for scarves if dollars are tight.

    If you feel like splashing out, have a look at Bravery Co.


    It's run by a young Aussie woman who's had cancer three times. The scarves are designed by different artists, modelled by women who've had cancer, and 10% is donated to cancer research. She does scarf tying tutorials as well. K xox
  • tsjlhmtsjlhm BrisbaneMember Posts: 14
    Can anyone relate to this? I’ve spent the last week having tests and port inserted and due to start chemo on Tuesday.  I’m really struggling waiting for chemo to start. It feels like the cancer is growing (even though I can’t bear to touch it to see) and I’m  finding the waiting excruciating. Any tips gratefully accepted. I’ve never felt like this. I’m guessing nothing can be done over next 24 hours even if I rang the surgeon / oncologist tomorrow, nothing would happen before Tuesday at this point. Just need to wait it out I’m thinking. 
  • arpiearpie Mid North Coast, NSWMember Posts: 4,081
    @tsjlhm - anxiety is to be expected, but try not to let it get a hold on you.  Can you chat to your Breast Care Nurse?  Failing that, ring the helpline here tomorrow to hopefully reduce your anxiety before you start on Tues.  

    Take lots of deep breaths, slow your heart beat down, another deep breath  ... once you start your chemo, you'll find some sort of pattern, and hopefully you won't have severe side effects.  Make sure you drink copious quantities of water between sessions - it really helped my husband get thru his own chemo sessions.

    Take care, big hugs & all the best for Tues xxx
  • Riki_BCNARiki_BCNA Administrator, Staff, Member, Moderator Posts: 321
    Hi @tsjlhm please dont hesitate to ring the Helpline tomorrow 1800 500 258 we are there to help you anyway we can. Take care of you. 
  • TinksTinks AdelaideMember Posts: 229
    hi @tsjlhm, what you are saying is so relatable. It’s a natural reaction to the diagnosis I think. Does it help to know that I was told  basically the faster the cancer grows, the more aggressive it is, the harder the chemo hits it? Now you are in control because Tuesday is D day! Chemo will start working on the day! On the minute! If you have AC or EC, you will have red pee as soon as you go to the bathroom after it starts. PS yes you can ask when you need to go and you can be easily disconnected . Don’t be alarmed. That’s how fast the drugs are in you working.

     My best suggestion is to get ready. Do some breathing, clear your thinking as best you can and get your chemo bag organised. Fix up some food for kids at home etc if you need to cos you may be feeling emotionally and physically tired after number 1 treatment is is over. Start pushing fluids now, get your phone or iPad charged, a book or mag to read. A warm wrap. Have you got EMLA cream for your Port to numb it before it is accessed? If not feel free toDM me and I can explain. 

    You can do this, one day at a time. You have started this process, soon enough you will complete it. in meantime we are in it together. Lots of love Tinks xxx
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