Many people believe that if you think something long and hard enough, it will come to fruition. The power of the mind should not be underestimated. Our thoughts can control our actions, so why can’t they control our health as well?
For patients diagnosed with prostate cancer, their thoughts can turn negative with the emotional and physical stress the disease elicits. This stress can lead to tense muscles, increased heart rate, and additional damage to a patient’s overall health, meaning a weakened immune system, one that can grow weaker from side-effects of certain prostate cancer treatments, like harsh surgery and chemotherapy.
In order to relieve the initial stress and even strengthen the immune system, some prostate cancer patients rely on natural and holistic Complementary and Alternative Medicines (CAM). The following mind and body CAM methods of therapy can help turn negative cancer treatment side-effects into positive well-being:
During hypnotherapy, a patient can focus on a particular goal, such as relieving pain, stress, or the need for a general sense of healing. Imagery has the same idea, only more visual. You need to see yourself well in order to promote healing. To help men cope with prostate cancer surgery, doctors take them through guided imagery sessions so they understand everything that will happen before, during, and after the procedure. Studies have shown that men who practice this stress management technique “reported better physical functioning a year after surgery”i.
Meditation quiets the mind by concentrating on relaxation and breathing, and so it’s been used as a therapy to treat pain and stress, two things many prostate cancer patients may know all too well. Yoga also focuses on breathing for relaxation, while also incorporating physical exercise to connect mind, body, and soul.
Mind and body exercises can all help in decreasing your risk of cancer by lowering stress levels and increasing strength and immunity. Be sure to talk to your doctor before beginning any complementary and alternative method of healing. Think well. Be well.