Cancer Survivorship: Adjusting to a New Normal

There are millions of adults and children in the United States who are cancer survivors. Many say that they felt they had lots of support during their treatment, but once it ended it was hard to make a transition to a new way of life. It was like entering a whole new world where they had to adjust to new feelings, new problems, and different ways of looking at the world.

  • A New Normal

    Adjusting to physical and emotional changes after cancer treatment and tips on coping with fear of recurrence.

    Your new normal may include:

    • Making changes in the way you eat and the things you do
    • New or different sources of support
    • Permanent scars on your body
    • Not be able to do some things you used to do more easily
    • Emotional scars from going through so much

    You may see yourself in a different way, or find that others think of you differently now. Whatever your new normal may be, give yourself time to adapt to the changes. Take it one day at a time.

  • Getting Follow-Up Medical Care

    Information about follow-up medical care for patients who have completed cancer treatment. Discusses your follow-up care plan, getting a wellness plan, and guidelines for a healthy lifestyle.

  • Late Side Effects of Cancer Treatment

    Cancer treatment can cause late side effects that may not show up for months or years after treatment. These late effects may include heart and lung problems, bone loss, eye and hearing changes, lymphedema, and other problems.

  • Family Issues after Treatment

    Discusses common family problems and issues that often occur after treatment and ways to cope.

  • Survivorship Care for Children

    Survivorship care for children who have been treated for cancer is important. Get your child’s treatment summary, survivorship plan, and recommendation on follow-up care clinics. Learn about long-term and late effects.

  • Questions to Ask Your Doctor When You Have Finished Treatment

    Suggested questions for cancer patients to ask their doctors after treatment is finished and they are planning for follow-up care and next steps.

As hard as treatment is, many cancer survivors say that the experience led them to make important changes in their lives. It helped them learn the value of being grateful for each day and for the people in their lives.

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