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Living with Physical Illness

Physical illness can occur suddenly and have a huge impact on all aspects of our lives, leaving our world shaken up. It is listed as one of the most stressful life events to occur and with good reason. Physical illness can affect our work, social life, ability to take part in leisure activities, manage our homes and our finances. Our self identity can be shattered and we may not know how other people will cope or react to our situation. There is a whole lot of uncertainty that attaches itself to a physical illness, not to mention the health aspects such as prognosis, treatment and symptoms of the illness itself. It is therefore understandable that having an illness can lead to depression and anxiety.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) can help you to cope with the impact of having a physical illness and the complications and uncertainty it can bring. It can help to replace old activities that you can no longer do, with activities that you can do and challenges thoughts and beliefs that are bringing you down. It can also help to improve your quality of life and ability to manage your own illness.

If you would like to find out more information about whether CBT can help with your physical illness, please see your GP for advice.

For more information about mental health and physical illness:

Naylor, C; Parsonage, M; McDaid, D; Knapp, M; Fossey, M and Galea, A (2012). The King’s Fund. Long Term Conditions. The cost of Co-morbitidies. https://www.kingsfund.org.uk/sites/files/kf/field/field_publication_file/long-term-conditions-mental-health-cost-comorbidities-naylor-feb12.pdf

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