The trauma of a life-threatening disease diagnosis for yourself or your loved ones can sometimes have a lasting effect on mental health. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that can occur after serious physical injury, or mental or emotional distress. Symptoms of PTSD include:
- reliving the time of diagnosis and treatment in nightmares or flashbacks, and thinking about it all the time
- avoiding places, events and people that remind you of the cancer experience
- being constantly overexcited, fearful, irritable or unable to sleep, or having trouble concentrating.
If you, your child with cancer or your other children have these symptoms, it is important to talk about them and to seek help from your doctor.