Tips for Coping

Tangled Line

Emotions of Cushing's disease: it can be overwhelming

Empower yourself. Physical symptoms are hard enough to deal with, let alone the anger, frustration, and sadness you may be feeling. It may help to know that other people with Cushing's disease feel the same way. There are ways to empower yourself and help your emotional well-being.

Cushing's Disease makes me feel...

How to flip the script

Cushing's Disease makes me feel...

I'm stuck in this nightmare and can't get out of it. I feel like I am drowning in this disease and in myself.

How to flip the script

Sometimes everything that comes with a chronic disease like Cushing's can be overwhelming. Try getting outside for a walk or similar exercise in the fresh air. Even just a few minutes can lift your mood.

Cushing's Disease makes me feel...

You are used to being active and fit and suddenly your body attacks you. I was very active, and then I was not. You hate yourself, it's self-loathing. You can't control emotions, and are constantly down.

How to flip the script

Don't be hard on yourself when you can't do some of the things you used to do. You may have to care for yourself differently than before, but there is no shame in this. Be more accepting of what you can do, rather than what you can't.

Cushing's Disease makes me feel...

I'm sad because I feel like I missed out on so much of life that everyone should get. I got cheated in the game of life. I feel like I wasn't given a chance.

How to flip the script

Talk to a healthcare professional about your different feelings. Your emotional health is important, and they want to hear from you.

Cushing's Disease makes me feel...

It stripped me of all my friends. I couldn't have a social life. I didn't know how to be a friend anymore.

How to flip the script

Try to combat the loneliness of a chronic disease. Surround yourself with families and friends who are supportive of your situation.

If you think you may have depression or anxiety, talk to your healthcare provider

People who suffer from chronic illnesses such as Cushing’s disease can have a higher risk of depression. This can be treated separately from Cushing’s disease and you should get help with this to improve your quality of life.

For more information, visit the National Institute of Mental Health.

Coach Cory

Let's be honest — these negative emotions aren't easy to deal with. Be patient with where you are in your journey. Take advantage of the little things that make your day easier. Talk it out, ask for help. Don't let these emotions bottle up inside of you.

Taking control of cognitive issues: clearing the fog

I have difficulty getting anything done. It causes a lot of frustration, anxiety, and depression.

Cognitive symptoms can develop with Cushing's disease, which some people describe as a “mind fog.” High levels of cortisol can make it hard to focus, either at work or at home. It doesn't help if you are having a hard time sleeping, as a lack of sleep also affects memory and attention. These struggles can start to affect your daily life.

So how can you clear the fog? First, it helps to know that attention and memory work hand-in-hand. The brain needs to be able to pay attention to things longer in order to save to its memory. Training your brain to focus for longer periods of time can help improve your memory.

Tips to improve memory and concentration

  • Practice focusing with daily meditation
  • Use self-talk strategies, or teach yourself "cues" to remember things
  • Repeat important pieces of information to help your brain remember
  • Use sticky notes to jog your memory
  • Include all of your senses (sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch) as specific memory cues
  • Organize your day with checklists or planners
  • Consider seeing a professional therapist for help in memory and attention span training
Coach Cory

Don't be hard on yourself if you are having memory or attention problems. It's not you—it's the Cushing's disease. Let your family and friends know what is going on. Take that next step and seek the help of a healthcare provider. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health.

I was perceived as unreliable. I was cancelling meetings at work.
You Can