Get Adult Children Involved
Many times, caregivers are reluctant to ask too much of their grown children, not wanting to burden them, especially if they are in the midst of raising their own families. But that does both you and your offspring a disservice.Your children should understand the nuances of the disease and share as much as they can in their parents life. Adult children can and should be providing you, the caregiver, with days off from caregiving now and then.
Depending on the stage of the disease, that can mean taking the parent to the childs home for a day or enjoying outings, like a trip to a museum or sporting event. That gives you a day to enjoy yourself or take care of personal errands, and gives your loved one and his or her grown child time to bond.
What Are The Symptoms
The best-known symptoms of Parkinson’s disease involve loss of muscle control. However, experts now know that muscle control-related issues aren’t the only possible symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
Motor symptoms which means movement-related symptoms of Parkinsons disease include the following:
Additional motor symptoms can include:
- Blinking less often than usual. This is also a symptom of reduced control of facial muscles.
- Cramped or small handwriting. Known as micrographia, this happens because of muscle control problems.
- Drooling. Another symptom that happens because of loss of facial muscle control.
- Mask-like facial expression. Known as hypomimia, this means facial expressions change very little or not at all.
- Trouble swallowing . This happens with reduced throat muscle control. It increases the risk of problems like pneumonia or choking.
- Unusually soft speaking voice . This happens because of reduced muscle control in the throat and chest.
Several symptoms are possible that aren’t connected to movement and muscle control. In years past, experts believed non-motor symptoms were risk factors for this disease when seen before motor symptoms. However, theres a growing amount of evidence that these symptoms can appear in the earliest stages of the disease. That means these symptoms might be warning signs that start years or even decades before motor symptoms.
Non-motor symptoms include:
Stages of Parkinsons disease
Pd Clinical Progression And Exercise
The study led by Dr. Kazuto Tsukita found that overall regular physical activity had a significant effect on the balance and stability of the participants. Patients with early-stage PD who took 4 hours of moderate-to-vigorous exercise each week had a slower decline in balancing and walking compared to those who took less exercise.
Speaking to Medical News Today, Dr. Tsukita explained: One very important message from our research is that the domains that are most improved by exercise are those that cannot be improved by drugs .
He went on to say, I believe that exercise should be used in conjunction with, not in place of, drug therapy.
The vast majority of people with PD, even those who exercise the most rigorously, eventually need medication for PD. The goal of exercise should not be to replace drug therapy, but rather to work with drug therapy to maximize quality of life.
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Take Control Of Your Health
As more people live longer, the incidence of chronic conditions is increasing, including Parkinsons disease.
However, as in the case of other chronic conditions, evidence is building that keeping your body and mind healthy might prevent or slow down the progression of Parkinsons.
Exercise regularly, eat a healthy diet and manage your stress to maintain the best possible quality of life.
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Parkinsons Disease Gets Diagnostic Help From Artificial Intelligence
Parkinsons Disease is one of several degenerative diseases in our neurologic system. It has a celebrity patient, Michael J Fox. Still, with a million patients living with the disease in the US and sixty thousand new diagnoses annually it lacks a biomarker to aid in early detection. An artificial intelligence program looking at nocturnal breathing may change that and, ultimately, how we care for these patients.
Parkinsons Disease is diagnosed by a cluster of symptoms related to its effect on motor nerves. There is no lab test or imaging study that makes the diagnosis. As a result, it often takes some time for a vague symptom to become so well established that a physician can identify it. Consequentially, the ability to make an early diagnosis is difficult. And because the disease is characterized by its symptoms, it is difficult for a physician to track PDs progress. After all, can you objectively say there is more weakness or a greater tremor based on subjective physical examinations months apart?
The current study used an artificial intelligence methodology to analyze the breathing patterns during sleep of roughly 7,600 patients and predicted the presence or development of PD in 90% of cases. But before jumping into the particulars of the study, a bit of background on PD.
Parkinsons Disease a bit of context
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Is Parkinsons Disease Inherited
Scientists have discovered gene mutations that are associated with Parkinsons disease.
There is some belief that some cases of early-onset Parkinsons disease disease starting before age 50 may be inherited. Scientists identified a gene mutation in people with Parkinsons disease whose brains contain Lewy bodies, which are clumps of the protein alpha-synuclein. Scientists are trying to understand the function of this protein and its relationship to genetic mutations that are sometimes seen in Parkinsons disease and in people with a type of dementia called Lewy body dementia.
Several other gene mutations have been found to play a role in Parkinsons disease. Mutations in these genes cause abnormal cell functioning, which affects the nerve cells ability to release dopamine and causes nerve cell death. Researchers are still trying to discover what causes these genes to mutate in order to understand how gene mutations influence the development of Parkinsons disease.
Scientists think that about 10% to 15% of persons with Parkinsons disease may have a genetic mutation that predisposes them to development of the disease. There are also environmental factors involved that are not fully understood.
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Symptom Prevention And Management
Dr. Salman Saeed and his team have helped many of our patients with PD delay the onset of their symptoms with management plans that are designed to meet their needs. Our plans integrate specially designed medications with appropriate lifestyle recommendations to help you live healthier, longer. Our team also has access to a wide range of support systems and resources that are incredibly valuable to people living with Parkinsons Disease.
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When Should I Start Taking Medication
If you have been diagnosed with Parkinsons, you may be wondering when you should start treatment and with what medication. There is no single strategy that applies to everyone. The timing will differ from person to person. It depends on a variety of factors, such as:
- the nature of your symptom
- your overall physical health
- whether you experience balance problems with walking
- changes in intellectual abilities, and
- your own attitude toward taking medication
When to start taking medication can be decided in consultation with your neurologist or movement disorder specialist. The decision to delay taking medication requires close monitoring and evaluation for risks of falls and injuries, especially if you are older. The older you are, the more you are at risk for a fall, and Parkinsons medication, when used appropriately, may reduce this risk.
If I Exercise Will I Still Need My Parkinsons Medications
Some people find that exercise helps them reduce the doses of Parkinsons medications over time. But exercise is not a replacement for your medications. In fact, some people need more medications so they can stay active. Dont make changes to your medications without talking to your healthcare providers.
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Symptoms Of Parkinson Disease
- Rigidity Rigidity can occur in the muscles as well as the ligaments and tendons of the joints in the body. Rigid muscles can cause spasms and sprains easily. It also reduces the range of motion of a person.
- Tremors Tremors are one of the most common symptoms and can occur in the limbs such as arms, hands, fingers, and feet. Tremors can be a great inconvenience while executing daily activities and hence a number of aids are required to counter it.
- Slowed Movement Parkinsons can make a person slow down in a number of physical faculties. Physical and mental, Parkinsons affects both functions by reducing the speed of the functions. Walking, standing, sitting, etc. might become slow and irritating to execute.
- Impaired Posture and Gait Parkinsons might cause a person to stoop or have an improper gait. This might cause impairment in daily functions. It might result in injuries and other conditions as well.
- Impaired Speech Slurring, hesitation while speaking, stammering, etc are some common speech symptoms that can occur in a person suffering from Parkinsons
Symptoms Of Parkinsons Disease
Parkinsons has four main symptoms:
- Tremor in hands, arms, legs, jaw, or head
- Muscle stiffness, where muscle remains contracted for a long time
- Slowness of movement
- Impaired balance and coordination, sometimes leading to falls
Other symptoms may include:
The symptoms of Parkinsons and the rate of progression differ among individuals. Early symptoms of this disease are subtle and occur gradually. For example, people may feel mild tremors or have difficulty getting out of a chair. They may notice that they speak too softly, or that their handwriting is slow and looks cramped or small. Friends or family members may be the first to notice changes in someone with early Parkinsons. They may see that the persons face lacks expression and animation, or that the person does not move an arm or leg normally.
People with Parkinson’s disease often develop a parkinsonian gait that includes a tendency to lean forward take small, quick steps and reduce swinging their arms. They also may have trouble initiating or continuing movement.
Symptoms often begin on one side of the body or even in one limb on one side of the body. As the disease progresses, it eventually affects both sides. However, the symptoms may still be more severe on one side than on the other.
For The One Who Loves Seeing Their Loved Ones
Visiting your loved one in-person can be the best gift of all! In between visits, make it easier to see each other virtually with the hands-free or other similar smart devices. These devices often have the added benefit of a voice-activated calendar and alarms. Help your loved one set up other smart features, like connecting it to lamps and appliances through smart plugs.
How Do I Take Care Of Myself
If you have Parkinsons disease, the best thing you can do is follow the guidance of your healthcare provider on how to take care of yourself.
- Take your medication as prescribed. Taking your medications can make a huge difference in the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. You should take your medications as prescribed and talk to your provider if you notice side effects or start to feel like your medications aren’t as effective.
- See your provider as recommended. Your healthcare provider will set up a schedule for you to see them. These visits are especially important to help with managing your conditions and finding the right medications and dosages.
- Dont ignore or avoid symptoms. Parkinsons disease can cause a wide range of symptoms, many of which are treatable by treating the condition or the symptoms themselves. Treatment can make a major difference in keeping symptoms from having worse effects.
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Levinsohn Textile Company Satin Charmeuse Silky Sheet Set Collection
Parkinsons deeply affects peoples functionality and mobility. This can cause poor sleeping patterns because of the difficulty people have turning in bed. Dr. Nwabuobi says silk sheets can make readjusting at night easier for people with Parkinsons. While silk is nice, it can also be terribly expensive. But these satin silk sheets do the job just fine and are a steal in comparison. These sheets are lightweight, breathable, and soft to the touch. Available in red, black, grey, and ivory, these sheets will add a nice pop of color to the bedroom and make anyone excited to fall asleep.
Allbirds has a great selection of slip-on shoes for both men and women. Their Tree Loungers, made from eucalyptus tree fibers, are especially nice. In addition to being conveniently laceless, theyre also lightweight and breathable, making it even easier for people with Parkinsons to slip them on. With their low-density soles, the Tree Loungers mimic the shape of your feet and add little weight, ensuring your mobility isnt hindered. Considering tremors are a common symptom of the condition, putting on shoes can be a complicated and time consuming task. But these shoes make the process simpleand it doesnt hurt that they help the environment by emitting less carbon than petroleum-based foam shoes.
Ways Physical Therapists Help Slow The Progression Of Parkinsons Disease
It is well-known that exercise of any kind is good for each persons health, both body and mind. But did you know that it is even more important for those living with Parkinsons disease? Physical therapy is key to slowing down the disease. And it helps those affected to stay as independent as possible.
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Helpful Food For Parkinsons
Here are some guidelines on which foods help best manage Parkinsons disease.
- Vary your food. Eating different types of food will ensure that you consume the essential vitamins and minerals that you need to manage Parkinsons disease.
- Increase your fiber intake. Consuming high-fiber vegetables and other food aids digestion, eases constipation, and helps you feel full longer.
- Eat more whole grain foods such as brown rice, pasta, whole wheat bread, oatmeal, or crackers.
Squatty Potty The Original Bathroom Toilet Stool Slim Teak
Courtesy of Amazon
Discreet and easy to stow away
Helps you achieve a natural squat position and easier bowel movements
More attractive than plastic stools
Standard 7 height, not adjustable
Many customers complain of poor construction and quality
Constipation is one of the common non-movement symptoms of Parkinsons disease, which is why many with the condition could benefit from a toilet stool. The Squatty Potty Slim Teak lifts your feet while sitting on the toilet to mimic a natural squat. While the act of pooping is anything but glamorous, the Squatty Potty has a sleek design that will add to any bathroom decor. Its also easy to clean and tuck away.
Gait Training To Improve Balance
Patients with Parkinson’s symptoms can enhance their treatment by doing what’s called “gait training” at home. This involves practicing new ways to stand, walk, and turn. People undergoing gait training should try to:
Practice gait training with the help of a metronome, a tool musicians use to keep a steady beat. A study published in March 2010 in PLoS One showed that when people with Parkinson’s walked to the sound of a metronome set about 10 percent faster than their fastest stride, it significantly improved their gait.
You can also try dance classes for people with Parkinson’s through the Dance for PD program, which is supported by a grant from the National Parkinson Foundation. The classes first started in Brooklyn, New York, and are now found in locations across the globe.
Traditional Chinese Medicine And Acupuncture
Traditional Chinese Medicine views disease as caused by internal imbalances. It has historically been used to treat Parkinson disease with acupuncture and individually prepared herbal remedies. One study showed that acupuncture improved symptoms in a small group of people with Parkinson disease. People with Parkinson disease may also find that acupuncture helps them sleep better. If you consult a TCM practitioner, make sure your doctor is aware of any suggested treatment.
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A Lower Protein Diet To Help Meds Work Better
Diets heavy in protein, for instance, can limit your body’s absorption of levodopa in Sinemet, a common medication used in the management of Parkinson’s disease. As a result, some doctors recommend that people with Parkinson’s limit protein intake to 12 percent of their total daily calories. And taking your medication on an empty stomach before your meals can help your body absorb the drug, notes the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation.
The Michael J. Fox Foundation recommends avoiding certain foods because of possible medication interactions, including:
In addition, fruits and vegetables in your diet may protect nerve cell function and possibly help keep Parkinson’s symptoms under control. Fruits and veggies also provide fiber, which can stimulate bowel movement and prevent constipation. Ask your doctor for a referral to a nutritionist to help make it easier to follow a healthy diet.
Adaptive Dining Products To Help Reduce Spills
Dining plates and bowls, plate guards, and two-handle mugs promote independence, self-confidence, and safer eating for those with Parkinsons disease. Built-up sides on plates and bowls help users to push food onto the fork or spoon as well as keeping the food contained. Suction bases on bowls and plates also help to prevent slipping.
For safer and easier drinking, this mug has a weighted base and two large handles to accommodate adult fingers. The lids spout also helps to prevent spills
This convenient dining kit includes a weighted utensil set designed to improve your grasp while feeding, as well as dining ware for reducing spills and messes
Designed to allow the user to push food against the raised side of the plate, this dish helps scoop food with only one hand if necessary
Promoting independence and self-confidence, this unique spill guard minimizes messy spills at meal time. It easily attaches to standard round plates for convenience
A polypropylene mug with an easy-to-grasp handle, used for either hot or cold liquids. The lid regulates flow for safer drinking
Stable dining surfaces can also help simplify mealtimes for those with shaky hands and weakness. The non-slip material can be cut-to-size and placed under a plate or bowl to keep it from moving on the table.
Simple changes and adaptations can make meals easier to prepare, eat, and clean up. Help your loved ones dine with ease and comfort using one of these adaptive utensils and tableware!
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