Yoga for Breast Cancer | Yoga Therapy
SPECIFIC ISSUE - BREAST CANCER
I've had the honour of teaching breast cancer survivors and provide care to those who are suffering from this disease. More often than not, the emotional benefits of yoga therapy is the most prevalent. Studies show that by combining a physical program (like yoga), healing is more effective than isolating the therapy to the mental aspect. [Don't ask me for the source, I do A LOT of reading in my study and training and this is one that was most likely quoted by my educators. Believe it or not.]
THE BENEFITS OF YOGA FOR THIS ISSUE (SYMPTOM CONTROL)
In helping breast cancer patients, yoga has multiple benefits:
Allowing cancer patients to incorporate gentle exercise into their already taxing treatment process by doing yoga at different lengths, times, styles and cycles that is complementary to their circumstance.
Yoga can alleviate the side effects (e.g. nausea and dizziness) from breast cancer treatments (e.g. chemotherapy), through deep breathing and relaxing of the mind and muscles in poses targetted to provide relief from those side effects.
By alleviating side effects of cancer treatments, cancer patients can sleep better. With improved sleep or relief from fatigue and insomnia, patients can relax more and further improve their healing and recovery progress.
For some, adopting a yoga practice teaches them a new way to breathe and trains the mind to deal with better pain management through meditation techniques. These new skills can help with pain management throughout the cancer treatment.
Christian yoga, specifically, combines the Word of God and salvation message to those who may be faced with terminal cancer that has spread to other parts of the body. This gives them hope and offers a chance for eternal salvation and a sense of peace as the patient journeys on their palliative care.
In helping breast cancer survivors, yoga has multiple benefits:
For cancer survivors, yoga does not target ‘pain relief’ and easing of the side-effects caused by the treatment. Instead, yoga can help survivors with rebuilding their life. Firstly, with breathing techniques that can help survivors adapt to any fearful situations or ‘traumatic effects’ as a result of having to face cancer.
With a well-designed program, the yoga poses can help breast cancer patients with the healing of scar tissue in areas which may have required the tumour(s) to be surgically removed, or even the breast.
Through the deep breathing and circulating oxygen effectively into the cells, the cells are replenished and increases the cells’ natural way of functioning to balance homeostasis. The meditation, too, plays a part in the brains production of healthy chemicals to stimulate homeostasis.
According to the study published in Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, relaxation therapy as described in The System 'Yoga in Daily Life' helps to improve self-esteem in breast cancer patients.
Post-surgery patients often experience changes to their own body image either due to removal of breast part or due to implantation of new one. Quite often, surgery leads to limitation in upper-body movements. This leads to self-consciousness and physical limitations. In such cases, yoga can facilitate positive changes to the body image and improves physical fitness.
Aside from the physical benefits, Christian yoga is a way for cancer survivors to participate as a way to find Christ and accept salvation, or for Believers alike, to connect closer with God and share their experience to be a lamp to the feet of non-Believers going through the same thing.
If medical practitioner has advised against yoga
Extreme fatigue then don’t ‘push through'
Not straight after any surgical procedures.
Do not stop any medication/required medical procedures advised by medical professionals.
15-30 MINUTE FLOW
Alternate Nostril Breathing in Easy Seated Pose
Seated Twist (Left & Right)
Cat/Cow (5 Sets)
Extended Childs Pose
Seated Forward Fold
Seated Wide A Fold
Seated Bound Angle Pose
Supported Reclined Bound Angle (create a cross with rolled blanket placed horizontally and bolster placed on top of the rolled blanket horizontally, reclining with the thoracic spine on the intersection of the cross)
These suggestions offered on www.lovejosephine.com are intended to complement and support the medical treatment targeting the specified issue, with the goal of enhancing the well-being of the patient. It is not intended to replace medical recommendations by your medical practitioners. It is highly recommended and, in most cases, essential that you stay compliant to the treatment advice given by a western medical professional. Prior to starting any physical programs, it is advised to get clearance from a medical professional. Upon medical clearance, the suggestions and educational resources offered on www.lovejosephine.com are meant to be observed and used in conjunction with medical treatment but not replace medical treatment.