Young adults dealing with cancer face a multitude of social, psychological, and medical hurdles.
This group demonstrates distinctly different psychological needs and issues based on their unique age-related development, as the "young adult" segment includes university students as well as adults who have spouses and are parents of young children.
Young adults fighting cancer often confront the loss of a sense of independence and the natural progression of maturity, as well as concerns over changes in physical appearance, fertility, and relationships. Additionally they face obstacles around education, insurance, and employment.
While most other young adults are leading healthy, active, and busy lives, a cancer diagnosis often makes it difficult to keep up socially, academically, and professionally, as well as relate to others. It is challenging for young adults with cancer to find strong, reliable peer support as they face their illness, resulting in feelings of isolation and despair.
The long-term effects of this disease are far-reaching for young adults. Depression and anxiety is common in the years following a diagnosis and treatment. The treatment itself leads to health complications that can last a life-time and culminate into very serious disease and second cancers.
The Whole Lotta Life Foundation will remain unwavering in its mission to work for and with young adults and their families by offering support, resources, and a community that recognizes the profound effect of cancer on young people's lives.
It is important to note:
Over the past 30 years:
• Cancer incidence in young adults has increased more than any other age group.
• Survival rates have not improved at the same rate as other age groups.
• Cancer has become the number one disease killer in young adults.
• Young adults are now the most underserved patient population by age.
• Delayed cancer diagnosis is now disproportionately higher in young adults.