Rays of Resilience

6 Ways To Deal With Your Fear of Cancer Recurrence

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It’s common knowledge that developing cancer once is generally a risk factor for developing it again, even after you’ve been in remission for years. It doesn’t happen to everyone, but it’s common to feel a sense of dread and fear for years after cancer.

While there’s often nothing you can do on a physical level but wait and get screened regularly for the types of cancers you’re most at risk for, there are some things you can do on a mental and emotional level to decrease the amount of anxiety you feel about the possibility of recurrence.

If you’re scared of getting cancer again, you’ve come to the right place. Here is a list of ways you can cope with your fear of recurrence.

6. Acknowledge your fears.

The first thing you need to do is realize that your fears are completely normal and okay to have. It’s not a bad thing that you’re afraid you’ll get cancer again; it may be the motivation you need to get screened regularly, which could save your life. The bad part of this anxiety comes in when you can’t seem to get rid of the feeling or when it begins to control your life. So remember that it’s okay to feel this way—you just have to work to make sure that feeling doesn’t get out of hand.

5. Get screened regularly.

Getting regular screening for cancer will help you avoid cancer and related complications, but it will also help you feel more confident and safe. Each time a test comes back negative, you can breathe another sigh of relief and go on with your life for a while, knowing you don’t have cancer.

Click “next” below for more ways to cope with the fear of cancer recurrence.

Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?
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