A Parkinson’s diagnosis often comes with many questions and fears. Right now, one of your biggest questions is how severe you can anticipate your senior loved one’s symptoms to get. Although everyone is unique, it helps to understand how Parkinson’s typically progresses so you can make the best decisions for your loved one’s long-term care.
Anticipating the Typical Symptoms
Some symptoms are common among people with Parkinson’s. For instance, many people are familiar with the jerky motions that tend to accompany the use of certain medications taken to control the disease. In the early stages, many people only have slight tremors or difficulty making facial expressions. Your loved one may complain of things such as a sensation of heaviness in the legs, but he or she should be able to accomplish most tasks. As the condition progresses, more serious symptoms can arise. Your loved one may have difficulty swallowing or performing necessary parts of the daily routine. Knowing about these symptoms can help you make decisions about how to handle the day when your loved one has difficulty with all activities.
If your loved one’s Parkinson’s symptoms are making it more challenging for him or her to continue living at home without supervision, consider hiring an in-home caregiver. One of the most challenging tasks of helping an elderly relative age in place safely and comfortably is researching agencies that provide home care. Dallas families can turn to Home Care Assistance for reliable, high-quality in-home care for aging adults. We offer 24-hour live-in care for seniors who require extensive assistance, and we also offer respite care for family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties.
Understanding the Gray Areas Between Stages
There’s no definite answer as to how bad your loved one’s symptoms will get. In fact, some seniors stay in the mild stage of Parkinson’s disease for many years, while others rapidly progress to the later stages. No matter which stage your parent is in, you also need to know there are still gray areas you must address. For example, your loved one may only have a mild tremor on one side of the body. While it may be barely detectable to a bystander, it could be a major issue if it prevents your loved one from being able to handwrite a note or cut up food. Ask your loved one how the symptoms affect his or her daily life to determine what level of care is needed.
Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable homecare. Families trust Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent and manage serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.
Finding Ways to Slow the Progression
There are things you can do to help your loved one prevent the symptoms from worsening. Always start by following the doctor’s recommended treatment plan. Many people with Parkinson’s disease do well with certain medications that control their symptoms. Your loved one may benefit from continuing to stay active. Using the muscles in the body prevents weakness. With this in mind, you should be cautious about having your loved one do too much. An injury to an affected limb could cause the symptoms to worsen.
Planning for the Future
Many of the worries associated with this diagnosis are easier to handle when everyone knows what to expect. Planning now for how your loved one wants to be cared for if the symptoms worsen gives everyone a greater sense of control. Research the condition and make plans for how to address each new symptom that could arise. While you hopefully won’t need too much assistance, it helps to have a plan in place should an issue come up down the road.
Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Dallas, TX, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s. To schedule a free in-home consultation, call (214) 363-3400 today.