- With Mayo Clinic nurse educator
Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.read biographyclose window
Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.Sheryl M. Ness
Sheryl Ness, R.N., O.C.N., is a nurse educator for the Cancer Education Program at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. She helps inform patients, families and caregivers about services and resources to help them through the cancer journey.
She has a master's degree in nursing from Augsburg College. In addition, she is an assistant professor of oncology at the College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, and is certified as a specialist in oncology nursing. Sheryl has worked for more than 20 years at Mayo Clinic as an educator. She has a keen interest in the importance of the quality of life and concerns of people living with cancer.
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Relaxation can help relieve stress of having cancer
By Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.
Relaxation therapies may help alleviate certain symptoms of cancer, relieve side effects of treatment, and improve your sense of well-being.
Many relaxation methods, such as massage therapy, meditation and guided imagery may be helpful in managing stress and anxiety. In addition, research studies show that relaxation techniques can lower blood pressure, reduce pain, and ease some side effects of chemotherapy.
Having cancer is stressful, so it may not be possible to eliminate all sources of stress. But you should consider the sources of stress that you can reduce. For example, ask for help with household chores, social responsibilities or work demands. Seek out effective strategies for coping with stress or simplify your life by saying "no" to the extra demands as much as possible.
Common relaxation techniques include:
- Tai chi
- Listening to music
- Guided imagery
- Massage therapy
Relaxation techniques involve refocusing your attention from the stress to something calming.
For me, it's taking a daily hike and being mindful of the changes in nature around me. It might be the sound of the birds chirping, new leaves on the trees, the beauty of the clouds against the blue sky, or a neighbor, cat or dog that welcomes me along the way.
I return refreshed and ready to take on the rest of the day. Choose a relaxation technique that works best for you and incorporate it into your daily routine. Share with others through this blog what has worked for you.blog index