Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is classified as a neurological movement disorder. It’s a progressive disease that impacts nerves within the brain responsible for producing dopamine, a chemical that promotes smooth, fluid movements and good muscle control. Getting early medical treatment for Parkinson’s symptoms and receiving home care are two of the best ways for seniors to retain basic motor function and maintain a high quality of life. Following are eight early warning signs of Parkinson’s.
1. Shaking & Tremors
Uncontrollable shaking of the hands, tongue, lips, legs, or chin is among the first signs of Parkinson’s. A breakdown in dopamine-producing neurons results in reduced muscle control during the earliest stages of this disease. Tremors or shaking typically occur when the individual is at rest.
Parkinson’s disease can limit the ability to perform daily tasks independently. If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to InCasa Home Care Services, a homecare agency you can trust. Our caregivers are available 24/7, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our in-home care services.
2. Diminished Sense of Smell
One of the very first early warning signs of Parkinson’s is a diminished sense of smell. Loss of smell during a bout with the flu or a cold is normal, but if this is prolonged, it could be a sign of Parkinson’s. Loss of smell can appear several years before cognitive and motor symptoms.
3. Altered Sleep Habits
Sudden jerks and other extreme movements like kicking, punching, and even falling out of bed can make it difficult for seniors with PD to sleep. As with tremors, these episodes are related to a loss of voluntary muscle control.
Speaking in a soft, whispery voice even though the person feels as though he or she is projecting is one of the early warning signs of Parkinson’s as well. This is the result of diminished coordination in the vocal musculature.
If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to InCasa Home Care Services, a leading provider of elder care Edmonton, AB, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
5. Facial Masking
Many seniors with PD develop what’s known as a “masked face.” This happens when facial expressions are stiff due to a lack of facial muscle control.
6. Hunching or Stooping
The inability to maintain good posture and a fully erect stance is another sign of diminished muscle control. Issues with leaning or hunching can become increasingly difficult to correct as PD progresses.
7. Muscle Tension & Rigidity
Tightening in the elbows, knees, hips, and wrists is a common problem among those with PD. Rigidity or uncontrolled tightening in these areas can gradually limit a person’s overall mobility.
8. Shuffling Gait
Seniors with PD often have short, shuffling gaits because the area of the brain that controls movement is heavily impacted by PD, making many normal forms of movement more difficult. If your loved one fails to swing his or her arms when walking or has difficulty starting, stopping, or turning, talk with his or her physician about having your parent tested for Parkinson’s disease.
Living with serious health conditions can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional at-home care. Edmonton seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more. InCasa Home Care Services can be your trusted partner when your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging. Call us today at 780-604-9688 to learn about our high-quality in-home care services.