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April 2024 | Parkinson Disease Awareness Month

April 1, 2024

For the one million Americans living with Parkinson’s Disease and their loved ones- Parkinson’s awareness is more than a month. It’s about bringing attention to a life-changing disease that is on the rise and connecting people to critical resources. This month it is important to educate ourselves on the many symptoms that impact those with Parkinson’s Disease and how to address them. It’s also about helping people recognize the early signs that can lead to an earlier diagnosis and overall better quality of life.

The A-B-C of Parkinson Disease

  2. Parkinson’s symptoms not related to movement are often more troublesome and disabling than movement symptoms. These symptoms can include anxiety, depression, vertigo, and more.

  3. Balance
  4. More than half of people with Parkinson’s will experience a fall in the next year. There are many tips and ways to prevent falls.

  5. Care Partner
  6. Like Parkinson’s there are several stages of the care partner journey. Explore resources and support from the Parkinson’s Foundation and your local and/or personal support network.

  7. Diagnosis
  8. Finding out you have Parkinson’s can be a lengthy process. A diagnosis is made through a combination of in-office tests and diagnostic tools.

  9. Early Signs
  10. From small handwriting and loss of smell and trouble sleeping, know the 10 early signs of Parkinson’s here.

  11. Fitness
  12. People with PD who exercise for 2.5 hours per week experience a slowed decline in quality of life.

  13. Genetics
  14. About 15 percent of people with Parkinson’s disease have a family history of the condition.

  15. Hospital Safety
  16. People with Parkinson’s are at a higher risk of hospitalization and longer hospital stays. Prepare and advocate for yourself with the Parkinson’s Foundation’s Hospital Safety Guide.

  17. Incidence
  18. Nearly 90,000 people in the U.S. will be diagnosed with Parkinson’s this year.

  19. Job
  20. “How long will I be able to work with Parkinson’s?” This question is especially important to people with young-onset PD.

  21. Knowledge
  22. Find the information you need now- from tools that help you work alongside your care team to resources that empower you.

  23. Lewy Body Dementia
  24. Robin Williams brought attention to the lifechanging prevalent disease known as the Lewy Body Dementia, a progressive brain disorder where cognitive decline is an early symptom.

  25. Motor Fluctuations
  26. Also known as “on-off” times, motor fluctuations are changes in the ability related to medications. “On” times are when you have good symptom control, while “off” times are when the medications wear off.

  27. Neurologist
  28. Neurologists and Movement Disorder Specialists diagnose and treat Parkinson’s.

  29. Occupational Therapy
  30. Rehabilitation therapies- occupational, physical, and speech therapies- can slow disease progression, address symptoms and enhance mental health.

  31. Parkinsonism
  32. Parkinsonism is the collection of signs and movement symptoms associated with several conditions- including Parkinson’s Disease.

  33. Quality of Life
  34. Finding the therapies and lifestyle changes that work for you and building your support network can help you live better.

  35. Research
  36. Parkinson’s research can lead us to breakthroughs in treatment and care at any moment.

  37. Stages
  38. Parkinson’s symptoms and progression are unique to each person. Knowing the stages of Parkinson’s can help you cope with changes as they occur.

  39. Tremor
  40. 70%-90% or PD experience a tremor. While most common in the hands, tremors can also occur in the lower lip, jaw, leg, or even internally.

  41. Urinary Incontinence
  42. People with PD may experience bladder problems. The most common is a frequent and urgent need to urinate.

  43. Vertigo
  44. Dizziness (feeling faint, weak, or unsteady) and vertigo (the false sense that you or your surroundings are spinning) are common signs of Parkinson’s.

  45. Wellness
  46. For people with Parkinson’s, the key components of wellness make an impact on quality of life- healthy diet, exercise, sleep, mind-body approaches, and social engagement.

  47. X
  48. X out any negativity or stigma to Parkinson’s Disease. You can do this by educating yourself and speaking out about the disease.

  49. Young Onset Parkinson Disease
  50. This occurs in people who are 50 years of age or younger, who often experience a different set of challenges.

  51. Zen
  52. Stress can make PD symptoms worse. Maintaining emotional health is essential to living well and can help manage symptoms.

Learn more at the Parkinson’s Foundation website.

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