A DIFFICULT DISCUSSION TALKING TO YOUR KIDS ABOUT CANCER
As pink-clad products line store shelves this October in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, children are bound to be curious. Since they rationalize the world around them with what they already know, kids may ask silly questions like, “Is cancer contagious?” Whether you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer or you just feel it’s time to educate your children about the disease, answering questions can be difficult. These tips can help you prepare. ALWAYS TELL THE TRUTH Telling a child that you or a loved one has cancer can be complicated. To start, the American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends giving yourself time after hearing the news of a cancer diagnosis to process this new reality. Two-parent households should tell their children together, while single parents are encouraged to ask an adult with a positive influence on the child’s life to join the conversation. Remember, your child will be experiencing the same emotions as you but in a kid’s body, where hormones and developmental changes are already wreaking havoc. Monitor their emotions and offer them space and opportunities to discuss their feelings with a professional.
When it comes to explaining the disease and its consequences, younger children may require fewer details and broader concepts, while older kids may need more comprehensive answers to their questions. A 5-year-old is going to have different concerns than a 16-year-old, so your approach must be different. However, regardless of your child’s age, always tell the truth. FOCUS ON PREVENTION EDUCATION A loved one doesn’t have to be diagnosed with cancer for you to educate your family about the disease and its prevention. Studies have linked prevention efforts, including anti-smoking campaigns and healthy lifestyle programs, to actually preventing cancer. (In fact, half of all cancers can be prevented!) Teach your child about the dangers of tobacco, alcohol, and excessive sun exposure to foster healthy habits and lifestyles. Organizations that host walks, benefits, and other events for cancer prevention and research can be great sources of education for families, too. The ACS has resources for families living with cancer or those wanting to learn more. Visit Cancer.org for more information.
RAISING AWARENESS FOR NATIONAL PHYSICAL THERAPY MONTH LIVE PAIN FREE — PERMANENTLY
October is National Physical Therapy Month, a time to celebrate and raise awareness for all the ways physical therapy can help people recover from injuries and become stronger than they were before. If you receive this newsletter, chances are you’re well aware of the ways physical therapy can benefit you. So, if you want to help raise awareness for physical therapy programs everywhere, here are a few ideas. SHARE YOUR STORY If you’ve undergone physical therapy in the past and it’s left you stronger than you were before, your story can be a powerful example of what it can do for others. In the United States, 1 in 5 adults live with chronic pain every day, and many of them might not know there’s a way out. If you have friends or family dealing with
injuries or pain, tell them about your experience with physical therapy and how you think it could help them, too. EDUCATE YOURSELF AND OTHERS While your experience with physical therapy may be unique, as it is for everyone, substantial objective evidence supports how it can treat pain and improve function for myriad conditions and injuries. Additionally, this year the American Physical Therapy Association is raising awareness about the opioid crisis, and how physical therapy can combat it. In 2016, nearly 42,000 people in the U.S. died from opioid overdoses, 17,000 of which were from prescription painkillers. People need to know that pain relief can be permanent, and it doesn’t have to be found in a little orange bottle.
COME VISIT IN MOTION O.C. If you’re considering surgery or painkillers to help you get through an injury or relieve your chronic pain, come visit In Motion O.C. first so you can see what physical therapy can do for you. We can help you gain permanent relief for pain and get back to what you love doing stronger than ever. Give us a call today!
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