Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

This condition includes many psychological and physical symptoms, and it can have a negative effect on relationships, work, and daily life. Some cancer survivors might experience:

  • Adverse feelings about hospitals and medical personnel.
  • Feelings of extreme anxiety, fearfulness, helplessness and irritability.
  • Poor sleep patterns, with nightmares about cancer and cancer treatment.
  • Flashbacks about the cancer experience and thinking obsessively about it.

Although rare in cancer survivors, PTSD can occur. It is diagnosed when the symptoms last longer than 30 days. Some of the coping mechanisms include:

  • Developing problem solving skills.
  • Changing obsessive thoughts and behaviours.
  • Stop avoiding situations.
  • Managing stress.[1]

[1] http://www.cancer.ca/en/cancer-information/cancer-journey/living-with-cancer/stress/?region=on