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What to do While You're Waiting for Cancer Screening Results

Waiting for the results of a biopsy, a scan, or a lab test can make you think a lot, which is normal.

Some people deal with stress by learning more about the situation and trying to figure out what their options are.

Others relieve stress by doing whatever seems fun at the time. Still others use the time to think about their priorities or grow closer to important people in their lives.

Here are some thoughts about hope to keep in mind, no matter what kind of balance works best for you.

  • About 20% of tumors in the breast are cancerous.

  • Most tumors that are cancerous are easy to treat.

  • Cancer treatments are getting better all the time.

  • Some Useful Tips While You Wait

  • Think about how you spend your emotional energy and get rid of "unnecessary" stress.

  • Keep doing what you normally do, like going to work.

  • Get some healthy food for yourself.

  • If you can, go for a walk or keep working out.

  • Look for help from people who have been in the same situation.

  • Use meditation, prayer, or thoughts that make you feel peaceful to calm your mind.

  • Signs that it might be time to learn some new ways to deal with stress

  • Obsession. If you can't stop thinking about cancer, you might want to slow down.

If you can't sleep, don't take care of yourself, can't take care of your kids, "awfulize," or spend a lot of time online researching, it might be time to take a break. Take breaks!

Signs you need to focus on self-care


Don't try to diagnose yourself, put off or avoid tests and treatments that are recommended.

If your doctor has given you more tests, it's because he or she wants to learn more about what's going on. If you need treatment or more testing, it's in your best interest to act quickly.

I'm getting too much advice.

Don't think that anyone else's life or situation will be the same as yours.

You have the right to choose when and how you get advice. Well-meaning friends and acquaintances may want to tell you about their good and bad experiences, but you can also listen to your own feelings. It's okay to say "enough" at any time.

Loss of hope or Despair. Notice depression.

If you think you might be depressed, tell your doctor. Even though sadness, worry, and grief are normal feelings right now, try your best to keep hope alive and grow it.

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