What can you do to live with your lung NET?
Like all cancer, lung neuroendocrine tumors can change your life
If you have been diagnosed with a lung neuroendocrine tumor, known as a lung NET, it is normal to feel confused, overwhelmed, afraid, and even angry. Your family and friends may feel the same way.
Remember, it’s important to learn how to live with your neuroendocrine tumor. Understanding your condition may help you live as comfortably as possible.
Tips for easier breathing
Taking a deep breath may be difficult for someone with a lung neuroendocrine tumor. This may be because of stress or respiratory symptoms. Click on a breathing exercise below to learn different ways you may be able to relieve stress or some of your respiratory symptoms.
- Take in a deep breath
- Hold it for several seconds or however long is comfortable for you
- Exhale slowly
- Repeat 3 times
- Breathe in deeply through your nose
- Instead of moving your shoulders up or down, push your belly out
- Pause for 1 second
- Breathe out through the nose, sucking your belly back in
- Sit in a chair with a straight back
- Relax your neck and shoulder muscles
- Breathe in slowly through your nose for 2 seconds with your mouth closed
- Pucker your lips as if you were going to whistle
- Breathe out slowly, while counting to 4
This exercise may help if you experience repeated coughing.
- Sit in a chair with a straight back and your feet flat on the floor
- Cross your arms in front of you
- Take slow, deep breaths through your nose and hold for 2 seconds
- Lean forward slightly
- Use your arms to softly push on your stomach while breathing out
- Perform 2 short coughs
- Rest and repeat
Ask your doctor if these breathing exercises are right for you. When doing these exercises, be careful not to breathe in too deeply for a long time to avoid getting dizzy.
Maintaining your health
Your doctor may suggest some things you can do to make living with a lung neuroendocrine tumor easier.
- Adjust your diet: Eating certain types of food may help reduce symptoms
- Exercise regularly: Mild activity, such as walking, is best and can help reduce stress
- Get a good night’s sleep: Get plenty of sleep and take naps when you can
- Avoid stress: Make time for yourself to do things you enjoy and keep a positive attitude
Continuing work and daily routines
Your family members and caregivers will be there for you throughout this journey. Don’t be afraid to ask them for help. They can help you with daily activities or cope with your feelings. They understand that the most important thing is for them to be there for you.
Your loved ones can help
- Provide emotional support
- Take notes and ask questions at your doctors appointments
- Keep track of your appointments and paperwork
- Drive you to your appointments
- Prepare meals and do the grocery shopping
Let the people in your life know how you feel and what you are going through. Asking them to be more involved can help you continue with your regular routines.
Connect with others
In addition to your family, friends, and caregivers, there are other people like you and groups that want to help. There are patient groups for people with all types of NET. These groups work to improve the lives of people living with NET through support, awareness, education, research, and advocacy.
Building a support network is a great way to learn about your lung neuroendocrine tumor and get more engaged with your care.
You should also ask your doctor or nurse for more information or about other groups in your area.