Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative neurological condition that affects many Americans today. While there is no known cure for Parkinson’s disease, there are many treatment options which have been proven to reduce symptoms and slow the progression of this debilitating ailment. Senior home care agencies provide care and support for your loved one to reduce the difficulties of living with Parkinson’s disease.
While Parkinson’s disease affects every person differently, there are some common symptoms to watch for. The most common symptoms affect muscle and movement function; however a lack of energy, pain and changes to mood or memory can also be associated with this disease. While the symptoms will begin gradually, and may be difficult to detect, watch for the following major indicators:
- Tremors which are the most well-known symptom of Parkinson’s disease and can generally be seen in the hands, fingers, arms, feet, mouth or chin. These will be easiest to see when the body is resting as opposed to moving.
- Slow movement, more severe than natural aging becomes noticeable when walking, standing and sitting. This is a result of delayed signals from the brain to the muscles and becomes more apparent as Parkinson’s progresses.
- Muscle stiffness, or rigidity, impacts the limbs and trunk and causes muscle pain intensified during movement.
- Poor balance because of the loss of reflexes that help posture can lead to poor coordination and falling.
When any of these symptoms are detected, schedule an appointment with your loved one’s doctor immediately for an evaluation of symptoms and a neurological exam. Since there are no lab tests to diagnose Parkinson’s, the doctor will test reflexes, muscle strength, coordination, balance and overall difficulty or interruption of movement. Senior home care agencies recommend listing symptoms observed by friends and family, even if they seem unrelated, to provide your doctor with additional information.
When a doctor confirms a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, he may prescribe a combination of medications to help treat symptoms and to slow the progression of this disease. In addition to medication, senior home care agencies can provide lifestyle changes to help improve symptoms and ease the difficulties of living with Parkinson’s disease. Caregivers can help seniors to understand and cope with their illness, reduce stress, stay active, exercise the attacked muscles, and avoid isolation. This approach to dealing with Parkinson’s disease can help your loved one to live a longer and happier life.
Assisting Hands Fort Myers provides senior care in Fort Myers and the surrounding areas.