Things a Doctor Might Forget to Mention After a Parkinson’s Diagnosis

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If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s, you will likely want to learn as much about the disease as possible so you can provide him or her with high-quality Caledon Parkinson’s care. Your loved one’s doctor can be a great resource during this journey, but there are a few details about the disease that might be overlooked at a doctor’s appointment.

Physical Therapy Can Alleviate Symptoms

According to the National Parkinson Foundation, physical therapy can help alleviate some of the movement and balance difficulties associated with Parkinson’s disease. However, scientific research on the subject is somewhat contradictory. Some studies showed moderate benefits, while others showed none. The conflicting findings may be due to the wide variety of physical therapy regimens that have been studied. At the very least, an experienced physical therapist can design an exercise program aimed at minimizing the effects of the disease.

Watch for Non-Neurological Symptoms

Though the majority of Parkinson’s symptoms are neurological and affect movement and muscle control, the disease can also cause other symptoms, which may include changes in sleep patterns and mood, gastrointestinal problems, and speech and swallowing difficulties. Many of these symptoms can be treated with additional medications or ancillary therapies, including speech therapy and mental health counseling. 

Informing Other Family Members Is Important

After receiving a Parkinson’s diagnosis, many seniors are often reluctant to tell their families out of fear of becoming a burden or losing their independence. By encouraging your loved one to be open with you and other family members about the disease, you have a greater opportunity to provide the emotional support he or she needs while coming to terms with the diagnosis. You and your family can also help your loved one plan for the time when he or she will need more physical assistance.

Ask the doctor if he or she is willing to have a brief session to discuss your loved one’s condition with the immediate family. The doctor can prepare them for what to expect as the disease progresses, which can help them make the necessary social and environmental changes to accommodate your loved one’s needs and arrange for part-time or live-in care in Caledon. He can also inform them about the potential physical and behavioral side effects of Parkinson’s medications, including uncontrollable movements and obsessive-compulsive behaviors, which puts the family in a better position to spot potential warning signs. 

When caring for a senior with Parkinson’s, you are likely to encounter many challenges, but you don’t have to face this journey alone. If you need help with your loved one’s Parkinson’s care, turn to Caledon Home Care Assistance. Our expertly trained caregivers can assist with mobility and exercise, provide transportation to medical appointments, and help with a wide array of everyday tasks. For more information on the elder care Caledon, ON, families trust, call one of our experienced Care Managers at 905-951-8885 to schedule a complimentary in-home consultation.