How Social Media Helps Younger Generations With Cancer

Dave Fuehrer, a competitive bodybuilder, was diagnosed twice with testicular cancer, reports PM 360 Online. He expressed that the second diagnosis was so much harder, as he was recently married in his twenties, and the desire to have children had to be put on hold, if not forgotten altogether. It was a dark time for Dave and he felt alone in the situation.

Dave felt like he didn’t have anyone to share his experiences with that actually understand first-hand what he’s going through. It was hard to connect with others with cancer, especially because during his 20s social media was mostly about organizing your top 8 on MySpace, not necessarily connecting with new friends. Now, times have significantly changed with the explosion of Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat. Dave feels that if he experienced his cancer during the modern times, he would have felt so much more support going through the intense process.

Dave then decided to launch a mobile app called Stupid Cancer. The app allows cancer patients and survivors to find one another and connect, as well as locate other resources for the community.

Social media always gets ratted on, but Dave is right. These days, kids with cancer could easily find others like themselves on social media. They can connect with them, encourage them, be encouraged by them and share their stories. Also, social media allows patients to share their story with their friends and family in more detailed. They could Snapchat their treatments, hospital visits and every day occurrences. Sometimes it’s hard for people, especially children, to understand what another is going through (specifically when it comes to cancer) without actually seeing it. We all know it’s devastating and a huge mental and physical challenge, but to really understand and support someone, you need to see it.

Many, like Dr. Buhtoiarov, think that social media is an amazing tool when used to find a community and support for cancer patients. Not only does it help patients, but family members as well as caretakers. Now, the American Society of Clinical Oncology makes sure to keep a list of resources for young adults with cancer to make sure they have every opportunity to be comforted and supported during their journey.

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