It is estimated that up to 10 million people around the world have Parkinson’s disease. Around 60,000 people are diagnosed with the disease per year in the US and by 2020, it’s thought that more than one million people will be living with this condition.
Suffice to say, many people here in the US are affected. In the later stages of this debilitating condition, people require a lot of assistance and care. This makes it very important for us to offer care for your loved ones living with Parkinson’s here at Fairview Adult Day Care.
What is Parkinson’s disease?
Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative disease that progresses over time. It affects the dopamine-producing cells in the part of the brain which controls motor movement. And as a result, the cells start to die.
Dopamine is crucial in the transmission of impulses between neurons in the brain. When the dopamine levels have dropped very low, the communication between certain parts of the brain become ineffective.
This then starts affecting the motor skills of a person with Parkinson’s, causing issues such as tremors, stiffness, and decreased function.
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms of Parkinson’s disease may include:
- Tremors and shaking, which is mostly noticed in the hands and fingers.
- Stiffness and muscle rigidity.
- Bradykinesia or slowness of movement.
- Balance problems.
There are non-movement symptoms that can occur too. They can range from anxiety, depression, and sleep difficulties to a loss of smell, speech difficulties, and incontinence.
What are the disease stages and the level of needed care?
- Stage 1: Mild symptoms such as light tremors usually occurring on one side of the body which don’t affect daily life. No care needed.
- Stage 2: Worsening symptoms such as stronger tremors affecting both body sides. Speech, walking, and posture might be affected as well. Daily life is still possible, but tasks are more difficult and time-consuming. A person with stage 2 Parkinson’s may still live alone.
- Stage 3: Slowness of movement and a loss of balance increase and all other symptoms in stages 1 and 2 are still present. Living alone is still possible but tasks such as eating and dressing become harder and time-consuming, a minimal level of care is normally required
- Stage 4: Symptoms worsen and are severe. An individual may be capable of walking and standing but is visibly impaired. The person can’t live alone and requires assistance and care
- Stage 5: People with stage 5 Parkinson’s disease can’t stand or walk without assistance. Usually a wheelchair is needed. Symptoms such as hallucinations and delusions can occur. The person is in need of full-time constant care.
Is it possible to slow Parkinson’s disease?
The disease is not curable yet but there are treatments that can slow down the progression. Medication can be taken to relieve symptoms and some drugs have shown to slow the progression.
In the late stages of the disease, a physician might recommend surgery. Other treatments can be exercise and physical and speech therapy, which have shown to be promising and are offered at Fairview Adult Day Care Center.
Parkinson’s disease care at Fairview Adult Day Care
Here at Fairview Adult Day Care in Brooklyn, our skilled team of compassionate professionals can care for a loved one with Parkinson’s disease. Our nursing staff is specially trained to assist and help people with neurological conditions. We offer many helpful activities such as physical, occupational and speech therapy, chair yoga, and many fun activities.
We want to provide the best care possible. If you have a loved one with Parkinson’s disease, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.