Parkinson’s Disease: Expert Tips for Care
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder that affects more than 10 million individuals worldwide and can cause tremors, shaking, difficulty speaking, balance issues, and a loss of movement within the body.
“Symptoms usually begin gradually and worsen over time. As the disease progresses, people may have difficulty walking and talking. They may also have mental and behavioral changes, sleep problems, depression, memory difficulties, and fatigue.” – National Institute of Aging Within this blog, Team Select will share more about Parkinson’s disease and resourceful information on how you can care for your loved one who may be developing or was recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s.
What do the beginning stages of Parkinson’s disease look like?
While the early stages of Parkinson’s vary from individual to individual, some common symptoms your loved one may experience or be experiencing include constipation, a reduced sense of smell, Bradykinesia, and tremors.
According to Parkinson’s Foundation, additional early signs of Parkinson’s may also include small handwriting, trouble sleeping, and a soft or low voice. It’s important to note that Parkinson’s symptoms include both motor and non-motor symptoms.
How do medical professionals diagnose Parkinson’s?
“There isn’t a specific test to diagnose Parkinson’s disease. A doctor trained in nervous system conditions (neurologist) will diagnose Parkinson’s disease based on your medical history, a review of your signs and symptoms, and a neurological and physical examination.” – Mayo Clinic
What does caring for someone with Parkinson’s disease look like?
Caring for a loved one with Parkinson’s can be emotionally stressful, physically draining, and sometimes isolating.
It’s important to know you are not alone in your caregiving journey, and there are resources to help you and your loved ones.
Firstly, we recommend learning as much as possible about the disease and how to support your loved one best. Secondly, ensure your loved one’s home is clear of any dangerous obstacles and is best organized with clear hallways, grab bars, ramps, and more. You can find an entire article on how to make your home safe for Parkinson’s here.
Additional tips for caring for someone with Parkinson’s:
- Get active with them and maintain a consistent schedule.
- Ensure their medications are taken correctly and on time when required.
- Listen and check in frequently.
- Attend doctor appointments and offer help whenever possible.
From a recent article by verywellmind, they recommend that caregivers set realistic goals, forgive imperfections, and employ community resources.
Another great resource includes Team Select’s Adult Long-Term Care services! In more than 11 states and 36 locations, Team Select offers personalized care for every patient and their loved one’s unique needs.
Our Long-Term Adult In-Home services include (but are not limited to):
- Continuous Hourly Nursing
- Respite Nursing Care
- 24/7 On-Call Service
- Tracheostomy Care
- Enternal Tube Feedings and Therapy
- Developmental Disability Support