CBT for Cancer Therapist Clare
Clare Reed,
CBT for Cancer Therapist

CBT for Life After Cancer

 

When you are post Cancer and all the rigorous Cancer treatment is over life after Cancer looks quite different. No more chemotherapy, radiotherapy, blood work, injections, operations, regular hospital visits. Suddenly you have your life back. Or have you?  It’s a great presumption that a lot of my clients told me they had, once it was all over, and they were sent on their merry way from hospital, with only a quarterly scan to do and some with daily hormones.  They threw a party to celebrate the end of it and thought they could draw a line.  That’s what they thought would happen, that a line could be drawn, but the reality was not so clear cut. 

 

The mind is conditioned to worry, that means it learns how to worry more just from an intense period of worry, and Cancer is an intensely worrying time for most.  People find they can be more cautious, more paranoid and more fearful than they were before the Cancer diagnosis.  Cancer can change your personality and not for the better.

Self-Belief & Confidence after Cancer

Self-doubt and low confidence in one’s future is an after Cancer side effect. Not trusting yourself as much as before, being more hesitant in decision making, and making future plans.  The ‘What if’s’ can impact greatly on the mind, ‘what if it comes back?’, ‘what if the scan missed something?’, ‘What if this pain in my back is a tumour?’… These after Cancer thoughts can be crippling.  They will take over your mental well being and destroy it, if they are allowed to fester and grow.  My CBT for After Cancer techniques are great at helping self-esteem and this is an area I have specialised in for a decade.  I will give you great impactful cognitive behaviural techniques and tools to kick these negative thoughts into shape and get your self-confidence back.

Cancer and PTSD

Another area of work at CBT for Cancer that I have helped clients with is Cancer Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which can affect up to 20% of post cancer patients. And it’s not only the patients but the supporters who can get PTSD.  One study found that nearly 20% of families with teenage survivors of childhood cancer had a parent who was experiencing PTSD.  If you find yourself after Cancer treatment with PTSD you will recognise the symptoms, flashbacks, nightmares, daymares, high anxiety, restlessness, apathy, comfort eating/drinking/drug use, avoiding medical centres, poor sleep quality, anger, irritability etc.  These can spiral into frequent panic attacks and depression and you really don’t want this. My CBT track record in anxiety means I have all the right tools and techniques to help you through this.  It is important not to let these symptoms build, starting CBT therapy fast is crucial.

Relationships Post Cancer

An often over looked area after Cancer is relationship building. Getting family life back to ‘normal’, working relationships, friendships and partners.  Being able to handle people’s expectations of you is key, particularly if you are on a hormone medication like 'Tamoxifen', because there is a lot of unrealistic expectations that loved one’s and colleagues have.  In particular, they can expect that once Cancer is behind you, you will be able to bounce back to your pre-Cancer energetic ways, but it is not always possible. I will teach you how to manage expectations and rebuild people’s perspective of you in a positive way.  No-one wants the label of the ‘Cancer person’ to linger on much past the last treatment but sometimes people can’t help but treat you differently simply because they learnt how to treat you differently during your Cancer treatment. I will help you to show them who the new you is, what you are capable of and what you want from them going forward.

Cancer has the ability to disrupt nearly a year and more of your life with all the diagnosis, waiting times and treatment plan, don’t let it derail any more years.  With CBT for Cancer I will help you with these post Cancer issues, using powerful techniques and tools to get your life on track and get your mind and body on your side. 

Book a session today and let’s get started on this.

 

Who is CBT for Cancer for?

It is for you if you are newly diagnosed with cancer, going through cancer treatment, or in remission and also for those affected by cancer, if you are a carer, an adult child of someone with cancer (over 18), parent, partner, friend of someone with cancer I am here to help.
The best part is you don't have to leave the comfort of your own home as all my CBT sessions are 1:1, face to face, on Skype. 

 

CBT for Cancer in a nutshell

 

CBT is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. It helps you with your mental thoughts (cognitions) and your behaviours (actions).  When you are struggling with cancer, at any stage, your mind can be your own worst enemy.

 

I will teach you techniques and tools to help you regain control of your mind and kick negative and unhelpful thoughts into touch. 

 

When your body feels like it is letting you down it is easy to give up and not help yourself, cancer can undermine your confidence and self-esteem, leading to sabotaging behaviour.  I will motivate you with actionable techniques and tools to get your body and your actions back onto the achievable life plan you want to lead.  

Emma's Story with CBT for Cancer

"I remember my last scan at the end of the treatment plan and being given the all clear.  I was on cloud nine, my husband and I had to celebrate and we threw a big party for all our supporters and I really felt I was over it all.  It was nearly a year after being given the all clear that I started to wake at 3am frequently with my heart racing, palpitations and feeling extremely tense. I saw my GP who prescribed some anti-depressants and I did start to sleep again but I noticed that my mood had downshifted a gear, I wasn't as positive or chatty and my husband thought I was being negative.  I booked in for CBT as I had read a lot about it online and started working with Clare, she really understood what I was going through, which helped me a lot. 

 

She gave me some amazing techniques, which I love using and after a few weeks I was thinking more clearly.  I came gradually off my medication while working with Clare and  3 months on I can say that I haven't had a bad day.  My techniques are so useful,  I use them as soon as I have a negative thought so I can not get affected by them.  I wish someone had warned me about PTSD I didn't know what signs to look out for after finishing my treatment plan and I think Clare is doing a great job in highlighting this area for post Cancer patients." 

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© 2018 by Clare Reed.