11/04/2017 by Lina Mavaega, Owner 0 Comments
National Parkinson's Awareness Month: Things to Know About Parkinson's and Dystonia
Home Care in Eagle River AK: Every year, almost 60,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease. The Parkinson's Disease Foundation puts the worldwide total at over 10 million men and women. Home care offers an invaluable way for someone with Parkinson's to remain in the comfort of their home. It's especially important to have home care providers when dystonia is one of the symptoms.
Every year, almost 60,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease. The Parkinson's Disease Foundation puts the worldwide total at over 10 million men and women. Home care offers an invaluable way for someone with Parkinson's to remain in the comfort of their home. It's especially important to have home care providers when dystonia is one of the symptoms.
What is Dystonia?
Dystonia is a symptom some people with Parkinson's disease experience. Dystonia involves very painful muscle contractions that affect approximately 4 out of 10 people with Parkinson's. During an incidence of dystonia, the muscles twist and spasm for an extended period of time. Medications help ease the pain and spasms, but the symptoms can return as the medication wears off.
Many muscles are impacted by the spasms associated with dystonia. These are the muscle groups that are most commonly affected:
- Blepharospasm: Cramps of the muscles around the eyes, which can force eyes to blink excessively or close and become difficult to open.
- Cervical Dystonia: Cramps of the neck, which affects normal head movements.
- Limb Dystonia: Cramps of the legs and feet, but also the arms and hands that make it hard to move or grasp items correctly.
- Oromanidibular Dystonia: Cramps of the jaw muscles that make it hard to open and close the mouth.
- Spasmodic Dysphonia: Cramps of the vocal cords that make talking difficult.
Problems at Home When Dystonia is Present
Around the home, dystonia can be problematic to a senior. Even in the early stages, mobility can be troublesome. Short walks don't pose much in the way of complications, but foot cramps and problems keeping the feet from dragging are common issues. Over time, dystonia can lead to tendons to tighten up and shorten, which further impacts mobility. Home care providers become beneficial in offering emotional and physical support while walking inside and outside the home.
Treatments Home Care Providers Can Help With
Many people with Parkinson's and dystonia find gentle strengthening activities like tai chi and yoga help alleviate the painful muscle contractions. Establishing short tai chi or yoga sessions into a daily care routine may be beneficial. Adult children of seniors with Parkinson's can also participate in these activities. It's a fun way to spend time together, while also benefiting everyone's mental and physical health.
With a home care plan in place, there are no worries about a parent being home alone when a muscle spasm hits. If a cramp hits and the elderly homeowner does fall or find it hard to get to a place to sit, a caregiver is there to help.
If you or an aging family member are considering home care in Eagle River, AK, please contact the caring staff at TLC Home Care today. (907) 336-CARE