By, Jessy Draka, Communications Intern

April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month. Muhammad Ali and Michael J. Fox may be familiar people, but how familiar are you with their disease? Many people have misconceptions about Parkinson’s Disease (PD) and education can change that.

 
Parkinson’s Disease is a neurodegenerative brain disorder, or motor system disorder, that can make walking, talking, and other everyday tasks difficult to complete. Between 50 and 60 thousand Americans are diagnosed with PD each year.

How would you know if you have Parkinson’s disease? The National Parkinson Foundation (NPF) lists ten early warning signs of PD.

Home health is an option for patients with Parkinson’s disease. Support and guidance is important when making this decision and throughout the journey of care. Living at home can be comfortable and safe if certain precautions and preventative steps are taken. Most falls take place in the bathroom. This is an important room to survey and make sure it is safe. Watch our video about the importance of bathroom safety. The kitchen is also a difficult room to navigate and manage, so some reorganization may be helpful to make living at home easier.

 
Kindred at Home provides home health to patients with many diseases, PD included. Physical, speech, and occupational therapies are offered to enhance the patient’s quality of life. Constant exercise and a well-balanced diet can help improve the patient’s health and disease management.

 
Caring for someone with PD can be accompanied by special challenges and questions. Being educated about the disease and adapting to challenges as the disease progresses can make caregiving easier and less stressful. Due to the multiple symptoms of PD and the side effects of medications that may be prescribed, time and patience is needed to learn how to provide the best care.