Fatigue is a common condition that is experienced by children undergoing cancer treatment. Children experiencing fatigue will explain the feeling as being tired and weak, the following are the common causes why a child experiences severe fatigue,
- Chemotherapy treatment
- Radiation therapy
- Poor nutrition
- Low blood counts
- Poor quality of sleep
How to effectively manage fatigue
If you feel that your child is experiencing excessive fatigue, notify their healthcare professional immediately. Here are various things that can be done to manage the fatigue of your child.
- Ask them to do more physical activity whenever possible
- An exercise program can be created by the child’s healthcare professional that increases their endurance and strength
- Boost their appetite by providing them with healthy foods once every hour or two. The snacks should be as nutritious as possible for ideas on the right food administration, you can ask your Child’s nutritionist for ideas
- Do not encourage caffeine intake
- The bedtime routine should be followed in the right routine
- There should be an adequate amount of sleep
- The child’s routines should be scheduled effectively and no activities of theirs should be overextended
- Work closely with the child’s healthcare team to develop a proper plan to decrease pain and fatigue effectively
Experiencing Fatigue in Childhood Cancer Treatment
While undergoing cancer treatment, patients do feel tired and worn out. The fatigue caused as a result of cancer treatment is different from regular fatigue and it does not go away after a good night‘s sleep or adequate rest. It can make it hard for patients to go about their everyday activities. It affects their school, work, relationships, physical, and psychological well-being. For some, fatigue can be experienced even after the treatment comes to an end. Though a common side effect, it can be quite distressing for both the patient and their families. That is why those around the patient need to manage the pain conditions effectively.
Tips for managing fatigue:
- Keep a legitimate and a customary sleep schedule
- It’s okay if you take extra rest even after your cancer treatment ends
- Intake healthy foods and maintain proper food habits
- Be active, do exercises whenever possible
- Spend time outside the confines of your house or hospital. Increase the exposure to natural light by spending a quality amount of time outside.
- You can also consult your healthcare team and work closely to treat the underlying cause of your condition
Ways to Manage Fatigue
The ‘no energy’ ‘drained’ out feeling is completely normal after you have undergone cancer treatment but it will get better with time. The help and support of the loved ones are also necessary to ensure a speedy recovery. With their help, it can be easy to identify and treat the medical and emotional factors that cause fatigue. However, there is no conclusive reason to identify why a person experiences fatigue. The following are some of the ways by which Fatigue can be easily managed and treated.
Healthy sleep habits
Sleep problems are quite common in patients, especially if they are in a hospital bed. Attempt to keep a legitimate sleep schedule. Make sure that you set a cozy and comfortable place for sleeping and when you are awake during the day, make sure the sunlight streams in through your window. This can improve the quality of sleep as well as lessen fatigue.
Exercise and physical activity
You need not do heavy workouts and exercise. a small stroll through the lengths of the balcony in the evening light and inhaling the fresh natural air can improve your mood as well as improve your health and fitness. Keeping yourself active can make your daily activities not seem like much of a chore. It can be tiring, but motivate yourself to do at least minimal amounts of exercise.
Due to patients not being able to eat proper diets, it can be difficult to retain the calories in their bodies. This decreased amount is not sufficient for their body to fulfill its energy needs. Drastic weight changes happen and the muscle masses also decrease. Guarantee your youngster practices good eating habits. You can seek the support of nutrition support to help your child fulfill their needs.
Cancer treatment can be physically as well as mentally exhausting. So, it is important to see if the fatigue that your child is experiencing is not due to depression, stress, or anxiety. A therapist should be assigned to talk to children at regular times as means of self-care and helping them to cope with fatigue.
There lie so many benefits in natural light that it regulates the happy hormones in the patients. This can help them sleep well and reduce the feeling of being overly tired. During their stay in the hospital, it can be difficult for them to get natural light, so the treatment is provided by using a controlled source of light for a specific time to regulate the internal clock of the body.
Tips for families to help take care of fatigue in children and teens
- Talk to their healthcare team about the most efficient ways to take care of them
- Monitor and keep a record of their symptoms. You can note things such as when they feel more tired, how long it lasts, what makes them feel better, and other factors contributing to fatigue such as stress, pain, or sleep problems.
- A proper schedule of sleep, rest, food, and activity should be maintained
- The fluid intake and the foods consumed should enhance their energy levels and keep them hydrated.