Now is the perfect time for you to take steps to counter your mesothelioma symptoms. Here are four great natural ways you can try. They won’t add to the burden of medications you’re already taking and best of all, they may enrich your life in other ways.
- Schedule a massage with a licensed massage therapist
Massage therapists offer a range of modalities that may help ease mesothelioma symptoms — from Swedish massage to intense deep tissue massage. Sessions may help reduce pain and improve circulation but may not be covered by insurance. Make sure to check with your doctor before starting massage therapy, and be up-front with your massage therapist about your mesothelioma and what symptoms of mesothelioma you are experiencing.
- Give acupuncture a try
A trained acupuncturist will insert tiny needles into various places in your body to alleviate mesothelioma symptoms such as pain and nausea. In traditional Chinese medicine, it’s thought that the precise placement of these needles can help regulate your body’s chi, or energy, and help correct imbalances that lead to pain and disease. A number of cancer centers in the U.S., including Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) in Boston, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston are integrating acupuncture into cancer care, according to the National Cancer Institute.
- Commit to low-impact exercise
Exercise can help you maintain range of motion in your joints, keep your muscles strong, and generally stay fit. It has been shown to increase endorphins, the happy hormones that fight pain and boost mood. You might enjoy gentle forms of exercise such walking, swimming, biking, yoga, or tai chi with your doctor’s permission. The deep, relaxing breathing and gentle stretching emphasized in yoga for cancer patients may help increase your flow of oxygen and help your body deliver vital nutrients to your cells. The American Cancer Society notes that yoga may help relieve some symptoms of cancer. Check for yoga classes offered at your cancer treatment center or hospital.
- Take a nap
One key to managing your mesothelioma symptoms is maintaining a careful balance between activity and rest. Mesothelioma can cause fatigue along with pain, so it’s important to listen to your body and take breaks when necessary. Even a short rest might help you bounce back better from a visit to the doctor’s office or running errands. Then you might have energy for that walk or yoga class (see above).
- Eat Omega 3s
Several studies suggest that a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids helps some cancer patients tolerate chemotherapy better, according to WebMD. Found in fatty fish and certain nuts and seeds, omega-3 fatty acids may help with other symptoms of mesothelioma. Some studies show they also may benefit brain function and vision. Always check with your doctor before adding foods to your diet.