Basic Facts about Parkinson’s Disease

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If your senior loved one has just been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD), you may not know what to expect after the diagnosis. PD is a neurological condition that affects movement and physical abilities, but it also has other cognitive symptoms that seniors and caregivers should be aware of.

Symptoms of Parkinson’s

Often labeled as a “movement disorder,” PD is directly related to a lack of dopamine in the brain. When nerve cells no longer produce enough of this chemical, the central nervous system can’t help the body perform basic functions anymore. This causes marked changes in physical movement, such as:

  • Lack of coordination
  • Stiffness in the limbs
  • Loss of balance
  • Trembling
  • Slowed walking

Beyond the Basics

As PD progresses, the symptoms worsen. The disease may become quite debilitating, causing more than just difficulty getting around. Nerve damage can make it challenging to talk at times, and some seniors may even have a difficult time eating and swallowing. Sleeping may also be challenging due to constant discomfort. For inexperienced family caregivers, help from professional caregivers can ensure their loved ones’ safety and comfort at home.

Many seniors in the early stages of Parkinson’s are able to live on their own, but they may need a bit of help with the everyday tasks of life, such as exercising and preparing nutritious meals. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable in-home care. Families trust Assisting Hands Home Care to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.

Emotional Toll

The physical effects are the most obvious signs of PD, but the disease can also lead to emotional and mental health issues. Anxiety and depression can develop out of deepened frustration over the loss of independence. The emotional toll often extends to loved ones and caregivers due to the difficulties of seeing someone go through the changes PD can cause.

For some families, caring for a senior loved one can be overwhelming at times. Luckily, they can rely on professional elderly home care. Arlington, VA, Assisting Hands Home Care is a trusted name in respite and hourly care. Our caregivers are available around the clock to assist seniors with bathing, transportation, medication reminders, exercise, and much more, allowing families the time they need to focus on other important responsibilities or just take a break.

Preparing for the Future

PD is most common in older adults, with the average onset beginning at age 60. It’s also most common in elderly men. Still, the disease can affect both genders at any age. There’s no cure for PD, which means early detection is crucial so seniors can begin treatment to prevent worsening symptoms. Medications are the most common form of treatment, while other seniors may require surgery to boost quality of life.

Caring for a loved one with Parkinson’s can be extremely challenging, and a compassionate professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support. Families looking for top-rated Arlington senior care providers can reach out to Assisting Hands Home Care. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones. To learn more about our reliable, compassionate in-home care services, contact us at (703) 997-4334 today.