Early signs of Parkinson’s are easy to miss. However, early diagnosis can benefit a senior’s long-term health because families can learn more about the condition and start treatment as soon as possible. Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior home care, Mesa families can rely on. The care providers discusses 5 early signs of Parkinson’s you should watch for.
1. Small Handwriting
Parkinson’s causes changes in the brain that interfere with a senior’s fine motor movements. One of the ways this manifests is through handwriting. You may notice the words your loved one writes are closer than normal and the letters are smaller. Since most people’s handwriting does not change much over time, this symptom should be reported to the doctor.
Uncontrollable shaking and twitches are other common signs of Parkinson’s. In the beginning, only your loved one might notice this symptom. Over time, others will also detect the tremors as they become more noticeable. Tasks that require cutting with a knife or holding cookware steady can become more challenging due to the tremors.
3. Sleep Disruptions
Many seniors have insomnia, but Parkinson’s symptoms cause additional sleep disruptions. Thrashing around, rolling out of bed, and other sudden movements may be a sign of Parkinson’s. The movements can wake your loved one and pose the risk of injury. Help your loved one sleep by maintaining a daily bedtime routine. Abed with rails and cushioning can protect your loved one from getting hurt if he or she has uncontrollable movements during sleep.
4. Increased Muscular Rigidity
As the body grows older, it is normal to experience a little stiffness in the morning. However, Parkinson’s can cause muscle stiffness that lasts all day. Eventually, seniors with Parkinson’s tend to develop a shuffling walk since they can no longer bend easily. Once this happens, your loved one may need assistance from a caregiver providing Parkinson’s home care in Mesa who can help him or her step over curbs and walk comfortably on outings.
5. Unusual Facial Expressions
Masking is a term used to describe the odd facial expressions seniors with Parkinson’s tend to display. Sometimes your loved one may have a blank stare, while at other times he or she will have a serious expression even when the conversation is fun. Familiarize yourself with your loved one’s emotional state. Knowing your loved one’s facial expression may not match how he or she feels can help you communicate more effectively with him or her.
When you are familiar with the signs of Parkinson’s, you can seek treatment and take the necessary steps to enhance your loved one’s quality of life. At Home Care Assistance, our caregivers are trained to provide mobility assistance and medication reminders to seniors as well as help with various household tasks. In addition to caring for seniors with Parkinson’s, Home Care Assistance also offers specialized post-stroke, dementia, and Alzheimer’s home care Mesa seniors can rely on. We offer free in-home consultations and no long-term commitments. To speak with a qualified Care Manager today, call (480) 699-4899.