Because Parkinson’s is a progressive disease, the patient’s symptoms become more debilitating over time.
Fortunately, there are numerous reliable elderly care services U.K. (Chelmsford) that helps seniors with Parkinson’s adjust to the disease’s effects on the body.
The elderly with Parkinson’s disease depend on caregivers for a range of routine tasks. This involves assistance with transportation and running everyday household errands.
What else can you do to help people with Parkinson’s handle a physically and emotionally draining experience? This is exactly what we’re going to discuss in today’s post.
What is Parkinson’s Disease?
Parkinson’s disease is a condition that impacts a person’s ability to control movement. As mentioned earlier, Parkinson’s is a progressive disease. It means it begins slowly and progresses over time.
As the disease progresses and symptoms worsen, your elderly may start feeling shaking, muscle stiffness, and countless other balance and coordination hurdles.
Not only this, but this disease may also affect your senior’s mental and emotional wellbeing and memory.
Who Gets this Disease?
Men are more likely to get this disease than women. Also, the elderly aged 60 and older are at a higher risk of getting Parkinson’s disease.
What are the Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease?
Speaking of symptoms…
Parkinson’s symptoms vary from person to person. Some of the most common symptoms include:
- Shaking: Shaking/tremor is one of the most common symptoms of Parkinson’s. Your elderly may feel shaking in their jaw or foot. Shaking worsens with stress or depression
- Bradykinesia: Another prominent symptom of Parkinson’s disease is the slowing down of movement. This happens when a brain fails to transmit the necessary signals to the body. Because of this, most Parkinson’s patients need help with daily tasks, such as bathing, grooming, and more
- Muscle stiffness: Muscle stiffness is another symptom of Parkinson’s that greatly affects your elderly’s mobility and movement. You elderly may also experience muscle spasms or twisting due to muscle stiffness
And these are just a few of the many symptoms of Parkinson’s.
Stages of Parkinson’s Disease
In general, the disease progresses from early-stage to mid/mid-late stage, and then advanced stage.
The symptoms are usually mild in the early stage of the disease. Many people confuse the symptoms of Parkinson’s with the signs of aging. That’s because symptoms are not easy to detect in the initial phases.
As the disease progresses, a patient may start experiencing more symptoms, such as tremors and lack of movement.
In the advanced stage of the disease, your patient may need a wheelchair to move around. At this stage, most patients need full-time nursing care.
A Caregiver’s Checklist for Everyday Care
As a caregiver, you may be asked to provide these services to the elderly:
Personal care and grooming
As a caregiver, it is your responsibility to make self-care as easy as possible for the elderly. Switch to an electric toothbrush or shaver if your elderly is finding it hard to move their fingers or hands.
Use the shower instead of tubs in order to prevent falling or slipping. Assist your elderly throughout the bathing process. Provide them with a shower stool and hold a grab bar for them.
Parkinson’s disease also causes numerous hair health issues in the elderly. Ditch chemical-based products and switch to organic alternatives.
Choose clothing that is easy to put on. Give priority to your elderly’s choice of clothing. Replace buttons or hooks with elastic bands and Velcro.
Do not use shoes with rubber soles as they can cause slips, trips, and falls. Prepare clothes ahead of time so that you don’t have to search for them at the last minute.
Give your elderly freedom to dress the way they like.
Dealing with Parkinson’s isn’t an easy feat. But don’t let your elderly’s symptoms discourage them from participating in different activities. Luckily, you can find a range of helpful tools in the market that makes the learning process a breeze for Parkinson’s-affected seniors.
If you’re elderly are fond of music and can’t play instruments on their own, you can take them to concerts or allow them to enjoy their favorite music online using headphones.
It is also essential to keep your elderly loved one busy with some other useful activities. Ask them to do a workout daily. Also, encourage them to keep in touch with their friends and family.
The biggest challenge for someone looking after Parkinson’s-affected elderly is to decide on a balanced and nutritious diet. Incorporate as much fiber as you can, including wheat, grains, oats, cereals, and fresh fruits and vegetables.
Also, prepare calcium-enriched food that includes yogurt and vitamin-D fortified milk.
If it is hard for your elderly to swallow food, you can prepare milkshakes, smoothies, or crumbled food to facilitate chewing and digestion.