Cancer rehab isn’t required for every patient since some individuals don’t notice significant lifestyle changes. Unfortunately, cancer and its treatments may cause unexpected side effects requiring therapy.
Some patients experience physical problems, including pain, fatigue, neuropathy, swallowing problems, or weakness. Mobility issues include difficulty walking, dressing, climbing stairs, rising from chairs or the floor, or showering. Cognition, behavior, and mood may also be affected during and after cancer treatments.
If cancer patients notice such issues, they should seek medical attention and rehab. Quick diagnosis ensures impairments aren’t allowed to worsen. Your medical team will diagnose the problem and determine the proper treatment to prevent further deterioration.
Several therapy options are available for those requiring cancer rehab. These include:
- Physical therapy – To increase mobility, balance, and flexibility issues in those with cancer, physical therapists create customized exercise plans for each individual. Rehab also includes pain management for those who need it.
- Occupational therapy – When cancer patients have issues with daily tasks, such as dressing, showering, cooking, or cleaning, occupational therapy is recommended. Therapists teach individuals new ways to function safely, which helps them regain their independence.
- Speech therapy – Those experiencing difficulty with chewing or swallowing benefit from speech therapy. Swallowing exercises strengthen the throat muscles affected by cancer and treatments. Cognitive therapy is also part of speech therapy, improving memory and organizational skills.
- Recreational therapy and emotional support – Rebuilding confidence and social skills is essential for those dealing with a cancer diagnosis. Recreational therapy uses fun activities, including music, art, yoga, games, creative writing, or dance, to reduce anxiety, depression, and stress.
As well as these therapy options, some cancer patients may require emotional or vocational support from a trained counselor. Discuss any concerns with your medical team immediately.