Healthy Living

How to Be an Encouraging Companion to a Friend or Relative with Parkinson’s Disease

Start a book club

Studies show that reading considerably strengthens the brain and prevents cognitive decline, and its effects are especially crucial to older people. According to Dr. Mark Stengler, “Seniors who don’t read or write much at all have a 48 percent faster rate of cognitive decline…Your brain is a lot like a muscle- and if it doesn’t get a good workout each day, it’ll get soft and weak real quick” (Stengler). Knowing this, reading needs to be included in the daily life of the patient if at all possible. Find out what topics and genres interest the patient, and then pick books that will appeal to both of you- and make sure the library has an audio copy if the disease has already seriously impacted their ability to keep their hands steady.