Healthy Living

Self-Care for Parkinson's Disease Patients

Self-Care for Parkinson's Disease Patients

Key Takeaways

  • Having Parkinson's disease is a challenge that you can overcome. 
  • There are plenty of things you can do to put your mind at ease after being diagnosed, such as taking up a new hobby.
  • It is key to have a support system, whether that be a support group, family members, caretakers, etc. 

At some point in the development of the disease, Parkinson’s affects the patient’s life. Nothing can prepare you for the feeling brought upon by hearing the diagnosis, which sometimes may seem numbing and scary. Parkinson’s disease isn’t curable, and knowing that you will have the disease for the rest of your life can take a toll on you. Having all those checkups, medications, and therapies following your diagnosis can cause stress on both your physical and emotional health. Having a family member or a caregiver may help you along the way, but caring for yourself helps bring at least some form of normalcy in your life.

Knowing a few tips for self-care for Parkinson’s disease and tips to manage the condition helps not only you but those individuals who are around you as well. Giving these people the time for themselves and the assurance that you can look after yourself can make all the difference because Parkinson’s disease can also be detrimental to the other family members involved. The last thing you need in your life is to feel like you can’t do anything by yourself anymore, and it gets you thinking, “how can I take a semblance of my old life back?”

According to American Parkinson’s Disease Association, once diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, your focus should be how to stay positive and improve the symptoms through proper awareness of the condition. As a patient or a family member of people who have this condition, understanding the disease can be of great help to manage Parkinson’s disease.

What is Parkinson’s Disease? Parkinson’s disease is a progressive neurological disorder characterized by the involuntary movement of the muscles and tremors. The disease worsens and worsens as time progresses, and as of now, there is no known cure for it.

What Can You Do to Help Your Caregiver?

The diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease doesn’t only affect you; it affects everyone around you. Realize that they themselves need time to readjust their lives with the news. Try to help them out a bit with these simple tips:

  • Give them days off; they also need to rebuild their strength. While they take their time off, you can take the time to have your alone-time as well.
  • Have other family members take care of you, try not to ask help from just one of your family members.

3 Best Tips to Look After Your Condition

1. Meditate: Start your day with a short meditation, give yourself inner peace by practicing the relaxing and rhythmic breathing techniques of meditation. All you need is to lie down on the bed and close your eyes, and then think of relaxing memories while you control the way you breathe. Doing this self-care for Parkinson’s disease tip can do wonders for your psyche, it helps you attain a sense of balance in your life.

2. Do Small Exercises Consistently: Exercise whenever you have the time. You don’t have to lift weights for you to say you’re exercising. After you meditate, you can stretch your muscles out a bit. Try to roll your head slowly round and round, then your arms, and lastly, your legs. Sit down comfortably, then bring your knees as far into your torso as you can. Do little movements, and remember that you’re not trying to become buff; you’re trying to flex your muscles to promote good blood circulation and ease those stiff parts.

3. Perform Simple Tasks that Need Precise Movements: Since Parkinson’s disease involves involuntary movements of the muscles, it certainly helps to condition your body with tasks that are simple yet precise. You can make simple meals for yourself and do easy chores like fixing your bed,  not only will it keep you busy, but it will also help control your body motion because cooking and household chores require small and precise movements.

How to Manage Parkinson’s Disease: Important Reminders for You

Here are the things you need to remember when dealing this condition:

  • Sure, your doctor already told you all about Parkinson’s disease and how it works. Most of the time, however, it’s too clinical and detached and to a degree feels cold that the prognosis numbs you up. Learn about Parkinson’s disease in your own time, learn through the experiences of others like you. Talk and communicate, know what to expect from those who went through it.
  • Know your limits and know when to rest. Sometimes we forget that we’re not like what we used to. It’s frustrating sometimes to see that those  activities that hardly make us sweat before now take the wind out of our bodies. Try to space out the activities you plan on doing, take at least half an hour every after each of those activities to minimize fatigue.
  • When planning activities with family members, make sure to plan ahead. As hard as it may be, don’t cram a lot of activities in one day.
  • Know the symptoms and list it down. Be aware of what’s happening to your body so that the next time you visit your doctor, you can tell the changes. Keeping track with what’s happening to can help your doctor better.
  • Parkinson’s disease should not hinder you from living your life. You just have to make minor changes in everything that you do. Life may be different from others, but it is a life that is worth living. Remember that there are people that love and support you. 
  • Try to have a new hobby like painting. This will help with your creativity, and the tiny movements help manage the tremors brought upon by Parkinson’s disease. You can also try photography, go outside, and snap a few pictures of nature. Taking pictures is an excellent method to keep track of your progress since a small shake of your hand can affect the quality of the images. The less blurry the pictures get, that means your condition is a bit better that previous. After all, it is always good to see progress; it keeps you motivated to continue fighting.
  • Join a support group to surround yourself with people who you know can understand and relate to your situation. It is always good to know that you are not the only soldier fighting the battle. Family members are not the only people who can help you overcome the stress caused by the disease. Letting friends and other people in can also contribute to make you live a positive life.

Final Thoughts

Life with Parkinson’s disease should not be seen as a curse; rather it’s a challenge that you can overcome. You have a lot of people that care for you and want to help you. All you have to do is look around you whenever you feel like the world is about to collapse and be reminded that life is more than just the disease that you have. This guide and self-care for Parkinson’s disease is one way for you to make your everyday life tolerable and meaningful. Life didn’t end when you got diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease; you just started living life at a different pace than you used to. You are not alone. You have family, friends, doctors, and others with this disease to get you through it.