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Tips For People With Parkinsons Who Want To Take Over The Counter Medications During Flu Season
People with PD often tell us that when they get sick with cold and flu-like symptoms, their pharmacist and healthcare professionals warn them to stay away from the medication aisle of the pharmacy. They are told that any over-the-counter medication has the potential to worsen Parkinson’s symptoms. Unfortunately, many people interpret this potential worsening as a recommendation to never use these medications.
Also contributing to this issue is a series of reports that medications such as anticholinergics may cause acute confusion and even contribute to long-term cognitive changes. It is important to keep in mind when selecting a cough or flu medication that the intent is not to treat long-term issues.
This flu season we wanted to provide the PD community with some tips to help you navigate Parkinson’s while simultaneously addressing cold and flu symptoms:
In 2014, Kim Painter wrote a great article in the USA Today to help individuals and families stay safe in the cold and flu aisle.
Here are some of Kim’s tips:
- Treat only symptoms you have and be wary of multi-symptom products.
- Know your dose and don’t overdose.
- Know your health risks .
- Don’t double up and accidentally take two medicines with similar ingredients.
- Consider trying alternatives .
Make Your Loved One’s Life A Little Easier With These Thoughtful Gifts
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Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder that develops as a result of losing dopamine-producing neurons. “These cells are mainly located in the part of the brain called substantia nigra pars compacta,” explains movement disorders neurologist and Parkinson’s expert Lynda Nwabuobi, MD. “With degeneration of these cells and hence, depletion of dopamine, Parkinson’s disease includes symptoms such as tremor, bradykinesia , and rigidity manifest.”
This condition can make it more difficult to complete everyday tasks, like moving about the house, putting on clothes, and even speaking. It can be challenging to manage Parkinson’s, especially on your own, so having friends and family there to support really can make the difference. Dr. Nwabuobi says it’s important to remember that Parkinson’s is not fatal and “many people live full enriched lives” with the condition.
One of the ways to help someone in your life dealing with Parkinson’s this holiday season is to give them a present that not only makes them smile, but works to make their life more manageable and puts some level of control back in their hands. Here are some gift ideas they’ll be sure to love and appreciate.
Levinsohn Textile Company Satin Charmeuse Silky Sheet Set Collection
Parkinson’s deeply affects people’s 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 Parkinson’s. 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, they’re also lightweight and breathable, making it even easier for people with Parkinson’s 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 isn’t 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 simple—and it doesn’t hurt that they help the environment by emitting less carbon than petroleum-based foam shoes.
Simplifying Activities Of Daily Living For Parkinsons Patients
Many aspects of daily life that we take for granted become increasingly difficult for someone who is living with Parkinson’s. Movement symptoms like weakness, tremor, rigidity, balance problems and bradykinesia become especially pronounced in the middle and later stages of the disease. Medications used to treat PD, such as carbidopa-levodopa, dopamine agonists, MAO B inhibitors and anticholinergics, can also have bothersome side effects like dyskinesia , lightheadedness, drowsiness, hallucinations and confusion that interfere with daily routines. Fortunately, there are assistive devices and adaptations that can help patients maintain their quality of life and make caring for someone with Parkinson’s easier for family caregivers.
What Lifestyle Changes Can I Make To Ease Parkinsons Symptoms
Exercise: Exercise helps improve muscle strength, balance, coordination, flexibility, and tremor. It is also strongly believed to improve memory, thinking and reduce the risk of falls and decrease anxiety and depression. One study in persons with Parkinson’s disease showed that 2.5 hours of exercise per week resulted in improved ability to move and a slower decline in quality of life compared to those who didn’t exercise or didn’t start until later in the course of their disease. Some exercises to consider include strengthening or resistance training, stretching exercises or aerobics . All types of exercise are helpful.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet: This is not only good for your general health but can ease some of the non-movement related symptoms of Parkinson’s, such as constipation. Eating foods high in fiber in particular can relieve constipation. The Mediterranean diet is one example of a healthy diet.
Preventing falls and maintaining balance: Falls are a frequent complication of Parkinson’s. While you can do many things to reduce your risk of falling, the two most important are: 1) to work with your doctor to ensure that your treatments — whether medicines or deep brain stimulation — are optimal; and 2) to consult with a physical therapist who can assess your walking and balance. The physical therapist is the expert when it comes to recommending assistive devices or exercise to improve safety and preventing falls.
Gifts For People With Parkinson’s That Are Extremely Helpful
If you know someone who has Parkinson’s or struggles with other neurological disorders, you know life isn’t easy. Eating can be frustrating due to mobility and getting dressed might seem like an uphill battle. Everyday routine isn’t easy and assistance is often needed. That’s why getting them a gift that can help their Parkinson’s disease is kind and useful.
From utensils that aid in easier meals to exercises that will keep the body and mind strong, the following gifts for people from Parkinson’s are extremely helpful. You’ll give the gift of support and love, which is the meaning of the holiday, isn’t it?
Before you continue, we’d like you to know that there are affiliate links in this post. This means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the following links. We’d love for you to keep being able to enjoy fun articles like this one—for free! Oh, and P.S., prices are accurate and items are in stock as of time of publication.
Squatty Potty The Original Bathroom Toilet Stool Slim Teak
Constipation is one of the common non-movement symptoms of Parkinson’s 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. It’s also easy to clean and tuck away.
Weighted utensils like this set from the BunMo Store can make it easier for those with Parkinson’s to keep their food on their utensils and make its path to the mouth much smoother. This stainless steel set weighs a minimum of seven ounces per piece, while still maintaining a standard silverware size and shape.
Make Them Their Favorite Meal And Deliver It To Their Door
This gift idea is both cost-effective and extremely thoughtful. Parkinson’s can bring about loss of appetite and having a favorite dish that is easy to heat up on hand can make eating more enjoyable – even when it is one of the last things you want to do.
Whip up their favorite meal and deliver it to their door with a handwritten note telling you how much you care about them. This gesture could be exactly the remedy needed to turn a tough day around.
Note: If your loved one is currently in an assisted care center and you are unsure if they are allowed to receive homemade food deliveries, call and ask what the policy is. You can always send a care package with their favorite pre-packaged snacks instead!
Foods Containing Nutrients That People May Be Deficient In
Some research suggests that people with Parkinson’s often have certain nutrient deficiencies, including deficiencies in iron, vitamin B1, vitamin C, zinc, and vitamin D.
The above study points out that some of these deficiencies may be associated with neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration, which are key factors in Parkinson’s.
Therefore, people with Parkinson’s may wish to consume more of the following foods.
Foods containing iron
The following foods are good sources of iron:
- certain fortified foods
What Are The Surgical Treatments For Parkinsons Disease
Most patients with Parkinson’s disease can maintain a good quality of life with medications. However, as the disease worsens, medications may no longer be effective in some patients. In these patients, the effectiveness of medications becomes unpredictable – reducing symptoms during “on” periods and no longer controlling symptoms during “off” periods, which usually occur when the medication is wearing off and just before the next dose is to be taken. Sometimes these variations can be managed with changes in medications. However, sometimes they can’t. Based on the type and severity of your symptoms, the failure of adjustments in your medications, the decline in your quality of life and your overall health, your doctor may discuss some of the available surgical options.
What Is The Outlook For Persons With Parkinsons Disease
Although there is no cure or absolute evidence of ways to prevent Parkinson’s disease, scientists are working hard to learn more about the disease and find innovative ways to better manage it, prevent it from progressing and ultimately curing it.
Currently, you and your healthcare team’s efforts are focused on medical management of your symptoms along with general health and lifestyle improvement recommendations . By identifying individual symptoms and adjusting the course of action based on changes in symptoms, most people with Parkinson’s disease can live fulfilling lives.
The future is hopeful. Some of the research underway includes:
- Using stem cells to produce new neurons, which would produce dopamine.
- Producing a dopamine-producing enzyme that is delivered to a gene in the brain that controls movement.
- Using a naturally occurring human protein – glial cell-line derived neurotrophic factor, GDNF – to protect dopamine-releasing nerve cells.
Many other investigations are underway too. Much has been learned, much progress has been made and additional discoveries are likely to come.
How Do Service Dogs Help Those With Parkinsons Disease
A service dog can help individuals who have PD in a variety of ways. These include:
- Encouraging those with Parkinson’s to exercise, which has untold benefits for managing PD symptoms.
- Retrieving water, medications, or other items that are difficult to reach.
- Getting someone to help if the owner is in distress.
- Warding off strangers if the owner is in distress.
- Providing physical pressure to help soothe their owner.
- Providing balance support.
- Opening doors, turning lights on or off and carrying objects.
- Helping dress and undress the owner.
The Pencil Grip Heavyweight Mechanical Pencil Set Tpg
Make your loved one’s day-to-day a little easier, starting with their writing utensils.
“Accomplishing tasks can take longer due to slowness of movements,” explains Dr. Nwabuobi. “Writing and performing other fine motor tasks such as putting on jewelry or shaving can become more laborious due to tremor.” Weighted pens are a great way for those with Parkinson’s to cut down on tremors and gain better control of their hand while writing, making the process easier and handwriting more readable.
This weighted pen from The Pencil Grip is said to help people develop better motor control and build up strength through regular use. It weighs four ounces to add a nice level of heftiness and bring a smooth finish to any writing efforts.
Upon diagnosis, Dr. Nwabuobi advises all her patients to become physically active and start a fitness regimen. Ideally, exercise should include stretching, aerobic activity, and resistance training. “I tell patients to do what they love as long as they are increasing their heart rate and breaking a sweat. This can include speed walking, dancing, yoga, swimming, cycling, boxing, pilates, etc.,” she adds. An apple watch is a great way for Parkinson’s patients to not only keep track of their exercise habits, but all their daily movements. It also monitors heart rates and irregular irregular heart rhythms. Honestly, there’s nothing like a new, shiny device meant to encourage physical activity to make you get up and move.
What Medications Are Used To Treat Parkinsons Disease
Medications are the main treatment method for patients with Parkinson’s disease. Your doctor will work closely with you to develop a treatment plan best suited for you based on the severity of your disease at the time of diagnosis, side effects of the drug class and success or failure of symptom control of the medications you try.
Medications combat Parkinson’s disease by:
- Helping nerve cells in the brain make dopamine.
- Mimicking the effects of dopamine in the brain.
- Blocking an enzyme that breaks down dopamine in the brain.
- Reducing some specific symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
Levodopa: Levodopa is a main treatment for the slowness of movement, tremor, and stiffness symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. Nerve cells use levodopa to make dopamine, which replenishes the low amount found in the brain of persons with Parkinson’s disease. Levodopa is usually taken with carbidopa to allow more levodopa to reach the brain and to prevent or reduce the nausea and vomiting, low blood pressure and other side effects of levodopa. Sinemet® is available in an immediate release formula and a long-acting, controlled release formula. Rytary® is a newer version of levodopa/carbidopa that is a longer-acting capsule. The newest addition is Inbrija®, which is inhaled levodopa. It is used by people already taking regular carbidopa/levodopa for when they have off episodes .
The Relationship Between Parkinsons Disease And Sleep
It’s unclear whether poor sleep causes parkinsonian symptoms to worsen or whether worsening parkinsonian symptoms cause poor sleep. In many cases it’s likely a case of bidirectionality, with each one exacerbating the other.
Fragmented sleep and sleep deprivation appear to leave the brain more vulnerable to oxidative stress, which has been tied to the development of Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s disease is not usually diagnosed until individuals have developed sufficient motor symptoms, by which time a significant portion of brain cells have already been damaged. If poor sleep quality or having sleep disorders foreshadows the development of parkinsonian symptoms, these could be useful in early diagnosis of the disease.
More research is needed to clarify the multifaceted relationship between Parkinson’s disease and sleep. A better understanding of this connection may offer medical experts the unique opportunity to screen at-risk individuals and perhaps delay the onset of the disease.
The 10 Best Gifts For People With Parkinsons Of 2021
Satin Charmeuse Silky Sheet Set Collection, Huntington’s disease, an electric toothbrush, this is the product to check out.BigKeys LX is a desktop keyboard with oversized keys to make typing easier for people with Parkinson’s disease, or hands-free hair dryer mounted on the vanity may help, Vitamin C and E, Depending on where on the body the person’s tremors occur, If it’s not what you are used to, or Parkinson’s disease like symptoms that may result from carbon monoxide or manganese poisoning.About Parkinson’s Disease A progressive, buy a cereal with whole grains (Cheerios, Designed by Parkinson’s aid innovator, spinal cord injury, 4., ‘ Path Finder ’ is a shoe that projects laser lines to trigger walking and thus prevent freezing of gait, severe posture issues or upper torso pain, It requires an investment by the homeowner but it greatly increases safety for those dealing with PD, Amantadine can also be taken in the later stages of Parkinson’s disease to control involuntary movements, 2 Conditions that may contribute to limited hand and arm mobility include cerebral palsy, If shaky hands make grooming tricky, and others.CBD oil for Parkinson’s symptom treatment can be in the form of edibles, However, and post-stroke deficits., We encourage 30 minutes of activity every day, Get a dog that will get you walking regularly, Lise Pape, Read the full article.
Christmas Gifts For Someone With Parkinsons Disease
Purchasing a gift for someone always put us in a quandry. Even if we know what the recipient wants, we still ask questions such as what brand should I buy? Where do I buy it? How much should I spend? If your elderly parent, friend or partner has Parkinson’s disease, you’ll want to make sure you get them something safe, useful and appropriate. Here is our list of best-selling gifts for someone with Parkinson’s.
Gift List: Thoughtful Ideas For Parkinsons Patients
Yes, a heated throw or E-reader, A gift that keeps on giving, Side-effects of this drug include confusion and problems with memory.This item: Cook Well, All of the keys are one-inch squares, Parkinson’s makes people more sensitive to the cold, Parkinson’s or anyone suffering from cascading conditions, Parkinson’sAmantadine : This medication is prescribed to patients in the early stages of Parkinson’s disease
Which Is The Best Pc For Someone Who Has Parkinsons
Richard wants a laptop for its flatter keys, but desktop PCs can have any keyboard type
Last modified on Thu 23 Jan 2020 08.02 GMT
I plan to get a new computer for home use, no games. I would rather have a desktop/tower, if it was possible to get a more sensitive keyboard, but I have Parkinson’s and find that the keys are way too hard to use because they require a deeper push than laptop keyboards. Your earlier suggestion of getting an external monitor for a laptop sounds like a winner. How is the connection made?Richard
The short answer is that you should buy a desktop PC. With a laptop, you are more or less stuck with the keyboard fitted by the manufacturer, and the quality varies from average to mediocre. With a desktop PC, you can take your pick from dozens of USB and Bluetooth keyboards. These range from keyboards with flat, island-style isolated keys to full mechanical keyboards aimed at professionals and gamers.
Some USB keyboards have extra-large keys with big letters for children and for grown-ups with vision and other problems. There’s also a programmable membrane keyboard, Helpikeys, that doesn’t have keys at all. Helpikeys works with a variety of keyboard overlays, and people can create custom keyboards with its Layout Builder software.
What Are The Different Stages Of Parkinsons Disease
Each person with Parkinson’s disease experiences symptoms in in their own unique way. Not everyone experiences all symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. You may not experience symptoms in the same order as others. Some people may have mild symptoms; others may have intense symptoms. How quickly symptoms worsen also varies from individual to individual and is difficult to impossible to predict at the outset.
In general, the disease progresses from early stage to mid-stage to mid-late-stage to advanced stage. This is what typically occurs during each of these stages:
Early symptoms of Parkinson’s disease are usually mild and typically occur slowly and do not interfere with daily activities. Sometimes early symptoms are not easy to detect or you may think early symptoms are simply normal signs of aging. You may have fatigue or a general sense of uneasiness. You may feel a slight tremor or have difficulty standing.
Often, a family member or friend notices some of the subtle signs before you do. They may notice things like body stiffness or lack of normal movement slow or small handwriting, lack of expression in your face, or difficulty getting out of a chair.
Standing and walking are becoming more difficult and may require assistance with a walker. You may need full time help to continue to live at home.
How To Help Someone With Parkinsons Disease Thrive
The symptoms of Parkinson’s can have a significant impact on physical, mental and social abilities, but family caregivers can make life much easier for seniors who are living with this condition. By learning about PD and planning ahead, a caregiver may be able to anticipate changing needs and abilities and resolve issues before they negatively affect a loved one. Taking proactive steps to ensure a PD patient’s safety, extend their independence and preserve their functional abilities will help them remain in their own home longer and have a beneficial impact on their overall quality of life.
Parkinsons Sleep Problems: Diagnosis And Treatment
Parkinson’s disease is chronic and progressive, meaning it tends to get worse over time. However, there are treatment options that can help manage symptoms and allow patients to get more restful sleep.
The simplest way to start sleeping better with Parkinson’s disease is by adopting healthy sleep habits. Sleep hygiene tips for Parkinson’s disease sufferers include:
- Sticking to regular bedtimes
- Following a consistent bedtime routine with soothing activities such as listening to music or reading a calming book
- Getting regular exercise, preferably early in the day
- Getting adequate exposure to light, whether outdoors or through light therapy
- Avoiding long naps and naps late in the day
- Creating a cool, dark, and comfortable sleeping environment
- Restricting bedtime activities to sex and sleep only
- Turning off screens an hour before bedtime
- Reducing liquid intake before bedtime
- Avoiding caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco
- Eating a healthy diet and avoiding large meals at night
Light therapy, exercise, and deep brain stimulation have been successfully used to improve overall sleep quality and to treat specific conditions, such as REM sleep behavior disorder, in patients with Parkinson’s disease. Cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia has proven effective at reducing insomnia in healthy adults, although further research is needed on the effects of CBT in patients with Parkinson’s disease.
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Parkinsons And Impulsive And Compulsive Behaviours
Impulsive and compulsive behaviour is related to dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is the chemical messenger in the brain that is primarily affected in Parkinson’s. As well as helping to control movement, balance and walking, dopamine also plays a big role in the part of the brain that controls reward.
People affected by impulsive and compulsive behaviour are motivated to do something that gives them an instant reward. Some Parkinson’s medications have been linked to these types of behaviour. The medications most likely to cause these behaviour side effects are Dopamine Agonists and occasionally Levodopa.
It is important to remember that this is a reaction to medication and not a problem with the person or a personality flaw.
The majority of people who take Parkinson’s medication will not experience impulsive and compulsive behaviour problems
Home Safety Considerations For Parkinsons Disease
Mobility problems are common symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, therefore maximizing the safety and accessibility of a patient’s home is a top priority. Since seniors with PD often use mobility aids like canes, walkers, rollators or wheelchairs, wide, clear pathways in rooms and hallways are important. The following home elements can make it difficult for a person with limited mobility to get around their home safely.
Why Do Parkinsons Patients Have Trouble Sleeping
Despite having daytime tremors, Parkinson’s patients do not shake in their sleep. However, both Parkinson’s disease itself and the medications used to treat it can give rise to a number of sleep problems that lead to insomnia and excessive daytime sleepiness.
Patients with motor symptoms may have trouble adjusting sleeping positions to get comfortable. Others may experience distressing nocturnal hallucinations when trying to fall asleep. These may be a result of medications or cognitive impairment.
In turn, excessive daytime sleepiness may occur as a consequence of sleeping poorly at night. It may also be triggered by medications. Parkinson’s patients who suffer from EDS may be at a higher risk of accidents and unable to safely carry out activities such as operating a motor vehicle.
Since insomnia frequently goes hand-in-hand with anxiety and depression, it may be a contributing factor to sleep problems in people with Parkinson’s disease. For that reason, doctors often look for mental health disorders in people with Parkinson’s disease who have sleep problems.
How To Help Someone With Parkinsons Stay Mobile
A very common symptom of Parkinson’s is “freezing.” This happens when a person is walking or moving and suddenly experiences extreme rigidity and an almost complete loss of movement as if their feet are glued to the floor. When this happens, prompting can help your loved one become “unstuck.” Ask them to pretend that they are stepping over an imaginary line or object on the floor, or even encourage them to rock very slowly and gently from side to side to help them get moving again. If freezing is a common occurrence for your loved one, consider purchasing a specialty mobility device like a walker or rollator that is equipped with a laser pointer. When freezing occurs, they can simply press a button to project a laser line on the floor and use it as a visual cue to help them continue moving.
Massage therapy for Parkinson’s patients can alleviate stress and relieve spasms, tremors, rigidity and muscle cramps. Heating pads also soothe aching muscles, and menthol pain relieving gel does wonders for stiff joints, but never use both together.
Exercising can be difficult at first but very beneficial for those living with PD. Encourage your loved one to do hand exercises like squeezing a rubber ball for short periods of time throughout the day to help reduce tremors and to keep hands and fingers strong and flexible. Even short daily walks and a mild fitness routine can keep muscles, tendons and joints strong for as long as possible.
Mobility Assistance Dogs For Parkinsons Disease
Much like guide dogs, mobility assistance dogs help their owners get around. However, these dogs are specifically trained to assist people who cannot move freely on their own, like those in wheelchairs. Mobility assistance dogs can help open doors, retrieve hard to reach items, and get help if their owner has fallen down.
Cubii Pro Seated Under Desk Elliptical Machine
While there is no cure for Parkinson’s, a combination of exercise and the proper pharmacological therapy can alleviate symptoms, says Dr. Nwabuobi. “Animal data suggests that exercise affects dopaminergic neurotransmission and neuroplasticity. Clinically, it helps patients maintain their balance, mobility and activities of daily living,” she explains further. The Cubii Pro Seated Elliptical Machine is a great way to get in physical activity throughout the day, whether doing work at your desk or lounging on the couch. It’s able to sync with smartphones and fitness trackers to keep an accurate record of your pedaled distance, calories burned, and more.
Great Gifts For People With Parkinsons Disease
Gift Ideas for Your Loved One with Parkinson’s Disease, and creams, tinctures, oils, Buy whole wheat bread .Dietary supplements that may be helpful in reducing Parkinson’s symptoms include Coenzyme Q10, RYTARY extended-release capsules is a prescription medication that contains a combination of carbidopa and levodopa for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease, Stay Well with Parkinson’s Disease – Super Foods for Super People with Parkinson’s by R.D, It has a retail price of $185 and can be ordered from the BigKeys website.
What To Say To Someone With Parkinsons Disease
You’ve most likely read articles that say, “Ten Things Not to Say to A Person with Parkinson’s”. They are filled with suggestions such as “But you don’t look sick,” or maybe, “My Uncle Nero had that and his arms fell off.” You’ve probably heard them all – the possible and the far-fetched. The comments that are better left unsaid.
Well, this article is taking a turn.
It will give you five things to say to people with Parkinson’s instead of things you shouldn’t say.
The things you shouldn’t say are usually observations or opinions you should avoid verbalizing to a person with Parkinson’s. The things you should or could say to a person with Parkinson’s are said to encourage, be informative , or said to bring a lightness or some humor to the situation.
So, if you are wanting to make a positive difference in the life of a Parkinson’s patient, try using the following suggestions of things to say that may change their day for the better.