A Parkinson’s support group can be accommodating, mainly when dealing with someone you love suffering from the condition. If you’re currently caring for someone with Parkinson’s disease, you’ll understand how much time, energy, and emotional strain can be involved.
Symptoms of Parkinson’s disease
If you’re a caregiver for someone with Parkinson’s disease, you need to know about the symptoms of the disease. This can help you better understand your loved one’s condition and give you coping skills. The symptoms of Parkinson’s can vary from patient to patient and can be debilitating to your loved one. Symptoms such as slowed movements, pain, and loss of automatic movements can make it difficult to perform daily activities. Parkinson’s symptoms can also affect your loved one’s emotions. They may feel anxious, fearful or experience hallucinations. In addition, they may not be able to communicate effectively. They will often speak in short bursts, have trouble understanding what you are saying, and have difficulty writing. Medications may help alleviate some of the symptoms. However, they cannot stop the progression of the disease. As the condition progresses, your loved one will need more care. A parkinson’s support group for caregivers near me can provide you with information and resources on the disease and the role of a caregiver. These groups can offer you the education, health and wellness programs, and other services to help you cope. You can also learn about non-medical therapies that can enhance the quality of life for your loved one. Some of these therapies include dance classes, physical therapy, and yoga. Whether you pursue these treatments or rely on traditional PD treatment, knowing you’re not alone can help you get through it.
Care partners take on many responsibilities
Caregiving for someone with Parkinson’s disease can be an exhausting task. A support system for caregivers is essential to caring for someone with a chronic illness. Taking care of yourself can help minimize stress and conflict. Developing a routine is helpful. Exercise and yoga can reduce caregiver stress. Parkinson’s patients can become depressed. They might also have trouble communicating with their loved ones. It’s important to talk face-to-face to understand your loved one’s behavior better. A recent survey found that nearly nine in ten (93%) of respondents identified themselves as primary nonprofessional care partners of a person with Parkinson’s disease. Almost eight in ten (82%) were spouses, and the rest were significant others. Many people believe that the role of the care partner is only essential in the early stages of a PD diagnosis. But as the disease progresses, a care partner’s position changes.
People with Parkinson’s disease may experience tremors, slow movement, pain, stiff muscles, and difficulty walking. Some medications can help to reduce these symptoms. Most Parkinson’s disease patients start taking dopaminergic medication. Dopaminergic drugs are effective at relieving motor symptoms. They may also be used to treat non-motor symptoms. Some people have problems with thinking, memory, or emotional changes. In the early stages of Parkinson’s, patients often experience depression. This is because there is a decreased supply of dopamine in the brain. When there is a decrease in the level of dopamine, it affects many parts of the central nervous system. Many people with Parkinson’s have difficulty sleeping. Medications can improve their sleep. Some people may need surgery to regulate the brain areas if the medicines don’t work.
Swallowing difficulties can be helped with speech therapy
Many people with Parkinson’s disease have swallowing difficulties. These symptoms may occur at any stage of the disease and are often worse as the disease progresses. A speech-language pathologist can help people with PD with their swallowing concerns. They can develop a personalized treatment program to improve voice and pronunciation and prevent aspiration. Swallowing problems can have a significant impact on quality of life. In addition, aspiration pneumonia is a leading cause of death for people with PD. Therefore, it is essential to address these problems as soon as possible. Speech-language pathology can help people with Parkinson’s maintain independence and quality of life. During the assessment, the SLP will perform a medical history and interview the patient about their eating habits. The SLP will assess the extent of the problem and recommend a treatment plan. The first line of therapy may include strengthening the throat muscles. If this does not help, the SLP may recommend different options. Some of these may involve thickening liquids, adjusting feeding rate, and placing food in an appropriate place. In addition, a speech-language pathologist can also perform a particular x-ray procedure called Modified Barium Swallow fluoroscopy. Through this method, the SLP can see the larynx and pharynx directly. Depending on the specific swallowing difficulties, the speech therapist may advise diet and eating habits changes. For example, certain foods or textures should be avoided.