Part of your role as a family caregiver is helping your parent to maintain their best health possible, and to guide them in managing health issues that do arise. For the vast majority of illnesses and health complications, early detection is key to ensuring effective care and management. Identifying a condition early enables you to help your parent understand the treatments and management options that are available to them and empower them to choose the course of care that is right for them and their personal goals.
Approximately 1 million people throughout the United States is currently living with Parkinson’s disease. Another 60,000 will receive a diagnosis this year. This progressive disease has both physical and cognitive symptoms and will require that the sufferer receive consistent care and treatment throughout the progression to ensure safety, health, and quality of life. Knowing the early warning signs of this condition can help you and your parent to identify if your loved one has developed the condition so that you can act quickly to get them started on the right form of treatment and management.
Some of the early signs of Parkinson’s disease include:
• Tremors. Likely the most recognizable and well-known of the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, tremors are not always as pronounced as people think they are going to be. In fact, they are often extremely subtle. Some people may experience slight twitches in their fingers or thumb, or a minor tremble in their lip. You may notice that your parent’s leg shakes when they sit down or that their limbs “jump” slightly when they relax.
• Smaller handwriting. Handwriting is a very personal thing and can be an indicator of many issues. When it comes to the early indicators of PD, smaller, tighter handwriting could be an indication of the early stages of this disease. Look for letters that are smaller and closer together, changes in the spacing of words, or writing that seems crowded and cramped.
• Changes in sense of smell. The sense of smell is an important way that people interact with the world around them. This can help to prevent dangers as well as triggering memories. Seniors who are developing often show loss of sense of smell, especially when it comes to particular scents. Banana, licorice, and dill pickles are smells that people with Parkinson’s disease often struggle to detect.
• Sleep disruptions. Though it is common for seniors to experience changes in their sleep patterns as they get older, if they are serious it could be an indication of Parkinson’s disease. Look for symptoms such as thrashing, kicking, or tossing and turning while sleeping. If your parent is complaining of not sleeping well or of being tired, consider evaluating their sleep to determine if they are showing these disruptions.
If your parent has recently been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, now may be the ideal time to consider starting a home care arrangement. This progressive disease will mean that your parent requires additional care as the months and years pass. Introducing an in home care services provider early in the disease will help ensure that they receive the care that they need at each stage while still being able to maintain as much independence as possible.
If You Or An Aging Loved One Are Considering Hiring Professional Parkinson’s Care in West Palm Beach & Palm Beach FL or surrounding areas, Please Contact The Caring Staff at Assisting Hands Home Care at 561) 781-5885 Today.