bicycle - exerciseFatigue is one of the most common, distressing, and complex symptoms experienced by some breast cancer survivors. It is a subjective sense of tiredness or exhaustion that interferes with usual functioning. Some describe the fatigue as weakness, unrelenting tiredness, or just worn out and feeling a loss of energy to participate in usual daily activities.

Up to 90% of cancer patients, in general, report some level of fatigue. Research indicates in some, the fatigue can persist for months or years after treatment – well in to survivorship. In one study of cancer survivors, 67% rated fatigue as among of the top 2 concerns, second only to the fear of cancer recurrence.

To Minimize Fatigue Here are Four Helpful Ways :

1. Getting Enough Seep

Experiencing sleep disturbances can actually worsen fatigue. If a survivor sleeps better, there is less of a feeling of fatigue.The standard nonpharmacologic approach is the use of cognitive behavior therapy. It helps one learn coping skills and ways for preventing or decreasing insomnia. Clinical trials in survivors with chronic insomnia showed weekly sessions of cognitive behavior therapy showed decreased fatigue and better sleeping.

2.  Exercise

The American Society of Clinical Oncology guidelines recommend survivors should engage in a moderate level of physical activity. The guidelines define this as 150 minutes of aerobic exercise such as brisk walking or cycling per week. In addition, 2-3 times a week engage in strength training. Of course, your physician should be consulted before any regimen is initiated.

3.  Nutrition

Always remember to eat a nutrient-rich diet. Plant foods such as fruits, vegetable, nuts, seeds, bean, and whole grains are excellent food sources. Also key is maintaining adequate hydration.

4.  Complementary Medicine

Ongoing studies suggests that some of the following modalities may be beneficial in improving quality of life for survivors: Meditation/mindfulness, acupuncture, reflexology, massage, reiki, aromatherapy, yoga, qigong, music and journaling. It is best to consult with practitioners that specialize in working with cancer survivors. In some centers, the integration of many of these modalities are part of an integrative healing approach.

Fatigue can successfully be managed, and it doesn’t have to greatly impact a survivor’s quality of life.