Coping with cancer

If you've been diagnosed with cancer, you may need help dealing with the impact on your mental wellbeing.

Whether you're a Bupa health insurance customer or not, we're here to help you find support, feel less anxious and more in control.

The emotional impact of cancer

Once you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, you may find it hard to cope with. You’re likely to go through a whole range of emotions, including fear, anxiety, sadness, guilt, anger and depression. It’s important to remember that there is no right way to feel - everyone deals with things in their own way.

On this page, you’ll find a range of useful information and advice from Bupa’s experts on how to deal with depression and cancer.

Two people helping each other cope with depression

Getting support for depression

It’s not unusual to feel sad and low when you’re dealing with cancer, with one in four people experiencing depression after their diagnosis. If you think you’ve got depression, it’s important to reach out and seek help as soon as you need it

Your doctor will be able to recommend several treatments, including counselling, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and antidepressant medicines.

Dealing with anxiety

A cancer diagnosis can cause you to worry about the impact it will have on your family and your future. You may also feel anxious about tests and treatment. Sometimes anxiety can start to manifest physically, resulting in shortness of breath or panic attacks.

Opening up and talking about your worries can make a huge difference to your mental wellbeing. You could talk to a counsellor, a support group or your friends and family – whatever helps you cope.

Eating well during and after cancer

Eating a well-balanced diet is important for everyone, especially if you have cancer. Many people find that they lose weight when they have cancer, which can be due to cancer treatments like chemotherapy. Eating well can not only help you keep your strength up, it can also improve your mental wellbeing.

Learn more about eating well during and after cancer

Once you’ve finished your cancer treatment, it can feel like a huge relief. It’s not uncommon to feel a little lost too. You may need time to recover, both physically and emotionally.

Find out about adjusting to life after cancer

How to look after your mental wellbeing

Cancer support and information from Bupa’s experts

Our wellbeing platform, Healthy Me, has lots of helpful articles about dealing with cancer.

If you're diagnosed with cancer, Bupa can help.

If you’re in a crisis or just need some help, don’t hesitate. Here are some really helpful organisations that you can turn to for support.

Mental health support as part of Bupa health insurance

Each story refers to mental health cover and reflects the experience of one particular Bupa member. The cover you choose will have specific terms and conditions and pre-existing conditions are normally excluded.

††Any onward referrals for consultations, tests or treatment are subject to the benefits and exclusions of your cover. For example, if your cover excludes conditions you had before your cover started, we may ask for further information from your GP. Please check your guide and certificate for further details or contact us to check your eligibility.

Bupa health insurance is provided by Bupa Insurance Limited. Registered in England and Wales No. 3956433. Bupa Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Arranged and administered by Bupa Insurance Services Limited, which is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England and Wales No. 3829851. Registered office: 1 Angel Court, London EC2R 7HZ.

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