What Is Parkinson's Disease?


What is Parkinson's disease?

Parkinson's disease is a medical condition which causes parts of the brain to become progressively damaged over many years. Parkinson's symptoms include:

  • involuntary shaking of parts of the body

  • slow movement

  • stiff muscles and the inability to flex muscles

  • balance problems

  • problems sleeping or insomnia

  • loss of sense of smell

A person with Parkinson's may also develop anxiety and depression as a symptom of the condition.

What is the cause of Pakinson's?

Parkinson's is caused by a loss of nerve cells in the brain which leads to a reduction of a chemical called dopamine in the brain. This chemical is essential in regulating movement of our bodies, and a reduction of dopamine is what causes many symptoms of Parkinson's disease.

Although it is not clear exactly what causes the loss of nerve cells, experts believe a combination of genetic and environmental factors can be the cause.

Who is affected by Parkinson's?

Around 1 in 500 people are affected by Parkinson's and there is an estimated 127,000 people in the UK living with this condition.

The symptoms of this condition are usually developed in people after the age of 50, although some people can also experience Parkinson's under 40. Men are more likely to be affected by Parkinson's disease than women.

Treatment of Parkinson's disease

There is currently no cure for Parkinson's disease. However, there are ways you can reduce the main symptoms of this condition and maintain a good quality of life for longer.

Things you can try:

  • supportive treatments such as physiotherapy and occupational therapy

  • medication prescribed by your GP

A live-in carer can also help you stay living independently in your own home by helping with daily tasks you may be finding more difficult as symptoms develop. A live-in carer will help with housekeeping, cooking, driving, as well as medication prompts.

If you think you may be developing symptoms of Parkinson's, see your GP who may refer you to a specialist.

If you would like to talk to us about live-in care for yourself or your loved one, contact our friendly specialist live-in care advisors on 0800 980 3958 or email us on hello@access-care.co.uk

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