Parkinson’s disease is a condition that impacts the nervous system, growing progressively worse as time goes on. The symptoms can be so mild at first that the older adult might not notice them—a small tremor in one hand or a change in facial expressions.
The symptoms increase over time and eventually lead to total disability. In addition to the usual symptoms, Parkinson’s disease is sometimes accompanied by complications that can make it even more difficult to deal with. Below are 5 possible complications for older adults with Parkinson’s disease.
#1: Parkinson’s Psychosis
About half of all people with the disease develop Parkinson’s psychosis, which causes them to hallucinate and have delusions. There’s no definite cause of Parkinson’s psychosis, but it may have something to do with chemicals in the brain, like dopamine and serotonin. In fact, some scientists believe that it could be a side effect caused by treatment with dopamine drugs. Others, though, think it’s just a natural outcome of the disease that occurs in some people regardless of whether they use dopamine drugs.
#2: Speech Problems
Parkinson’s can affect the muscles used in speech. It can make the older adult’s speech sound hoarse. Speech may also become very quiet and be difficult to hear. In addition, cognitive problems can affect the senior’s ability to communicate with others. If these changes occur in your aging relative, working with a speech therapist may help them to communicate better.
It’s not uncommon for people with Parkinson’s to experience depression and other emotional problems, like anxiety and a lack of motivation. These problems can occur even in the early stages. Emotional issues are treatable with medications and counseling, so if your older family member seems depressed, talk to the doctor.
#4: Sleep Disorders
Your aging relative may wake up frequently during the night, affecting their quality of sleep. They may also wake up very early in the morning or feel sleepy during the day. Some people with Parkinson’s also develop a sleep disorder that causes them to act out their dreams while they are sleeping.
The older adult may experience fatigue, which causes them to feel extremely tired even after resting. It can make staying involved with friends and family and completing daily tasks difficult.
Home care can help your elderly loved one to overcome some of the complications of Parkinson’s disease. A home care provider can assist with household duties when the senior is too tired to clean the house or cook a meal. Home care providers can also remind them when to take medications for the disease, depression, or to control sleep disorders. Home care providers can also keep seniors who suffer from Parkinson’s psychosis to stay safe when cognitive problems might cause them to make unsafe choices.
Are you or a loved one considering hiring Home Care in Maumelle, AR? First Choice Senior Care can help. Serving all of Little Rock and Central Arkansas. Please call and talk to our caring staff today. (501) 916-9307
Kayla believes in advocating for and educating seniors and their families on a variety of topics and issues that impact them.Reflecting on the need for an independent home care provider interested in quality over quantity, she chased her dream of building her own company that would make a significant difference in the lives of seniors, providing a much-needed service in her own local community.
Kayla holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Arkansas State University, is licensed by the state of Arkansas as a Long-Term Care Administrator, and is a Certified Senior Adviser.
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