The Mind-Body Medicine Department at Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) supports you and your family before, during and after cancer treatment.
Our licensed mind-body therapists understand the powerful connection that exists between the mind, body and spirit, between stress and illness, and between health and hope. We work with you and your care team to provide behavioral practices designed to promote healing, reduce emotional distress and improve quality of life.
All of our mind-body services are available to patients, caregivers and their families:
- Individual, couples and family counseling: A mind-body therapist schedules at least one visit with every in-patient to introduce the options available in this department, such as cancer support groups, counseling and individual therapy services. It is your decision if you would like to continue meeting with a therapist. Our mind-body therapists may offer strategies to help you cope with anxiety and depression, assist with family dynamics and communication, reduce stress and help you live a meaningful life during your cancer journey.
- Guided imagery: This is a relaxation technique that teaches patients to use positive mental images to manage stress and physical discomfort. Guided imagery can be used to help cancer patients deal with their pain, nausea and anxiety, and also to support the immune system.
- Deep breathing exercises: Mind-body therapists work with patients on an individual basis to teach deep breathing as a relaxation and stress-management technique.
- Laughter therapy: These sessions provide a safe place where patients can laugh. Research has shown that this type of mind-body medicine can reduce stress, improve pain and balance blood pressure.
- Music therapy: Certified music therapists are available at some of our hospitals, using music to help patients address physical and emotional needs.
- Stress management: Techniques and classes helps patients and their loved ones learn methods for self comfort and stress reduction.
Our mind-body therapists work closely with your entire cancer treatment team and are here to support you in making ongoing care decisions. In addition, they can connect you with qualified practitioners, support groups and counseling services in your area once you return home.
The mind-body medicine team at Western
The mind-body medicine team at CTCA at Western Regional Medical Center (Western) is comprised of licensed psychologists and licensed clinical social workers.
"Mind-body medicine offers patients and caregivers the chance to discuss stressors in their lives and provides ways to decrease them," says mind-body therapist Stephen White.
Mind-body medicine may benefit a cancer patient by ensuring that the patient understands that he/she is not defined by the illness.