Tips for Caring for an Aging Parent Living with Parkinson’s

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After hearing about your aging loved one’s Parkinson’s diagnosis, you probably felt overwhelmed. Parkinson’s is an extremely complicated disease, and many family caregivers don’t know how to look after their loved ones who have this progressive neurological condition. While you’re sure to run into a few challenges, there are some simple steps you can take to make your caregiving duties easier. 

Fill Your Parent’s Diet with Superfoods

Eating can be quite difficult for those who have Parkinson’s, which is one of the reasons many seniors with the disease develop nutritional deficiencies. Over time, these deficiencies can exacerbate some of the worst symptoms of Parkinson’s and speed up the disease’s progress. While the occasional treat is perfectly fine, your loved one’s diet should primarily consist of nutrient-dense superfoods, healthy fats, lean sources of protein, and complex carbohydrates.

Many seniors in the early stages of Parkinson’s are able to live on their own, but they may need a bit of help with everyday activities, such as exercising and preparing nutritious meals. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable senior home care. 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.

Limit the Risk of Falls

Most seniors with Parkinson’s experience balance issues at some point, and falls are very common among aging adults with the disease. To limit your loved one’s risk of falling, make sure he or she uses the proper mobility devices at all times. You’ll also need to go through your loved one’s home and remove any tripping hazards. As the disease progresses, you might want to consider installing grab bars throughout the home as well. 

Living with a serious health condition can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Carmichael seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more.

Find a Good Form of Exercise

There are quite a few reasons seniors with Parkinson’s must try to exercise at least a few times a week. In addition to minimizing some of the physical symptoms of the disease, exercising can also boost mental health. In the earliest stages of the disease, your loved one might benefit from full-body exercises such as dancing and swimming. Studies have revealed that lifting light weights is another great option for seniors with Parkinson’s because it can reduce muscle rigidity and tremors. 

Carefully Track Medications

Your loved one will most likely be prescribed at least a handful of medications. Some of these drugs could produce a wide array of unusual side effects, and you need to keep track of how these medications affect your loved one. If the side effects are particularly severe, the doctor should be notified right away. You might also want to use pill organizers with multiple compartments so your loved one doesn’t overdose or miss a dose. 

Keep Your Parent Socially Engaged

According to the Parkinson’s Foundation, nearly 50 percent of all people with Parkinson’s develop some form of depression, and just over 40 percent develop anxiety disorders as well. To combat those issues, your loved one needs to remain socially active and engaged. You should also encourage him or her to speak with a counselor or therapist if you notice any signs of depression or anxiety.

Caring for a loved one with Parkinson’s can be extremely challenging, and a compassionate professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support. If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a Carmichael in-home care 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. To learn more about our reliable, compassionate in-home care services, contact us at (916) 485-4663 today.