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TIPS FOR CARE PARTNERS

If you are caring for someone with PD, you play a significant role in your loved one's life. As managing symptoms becomes more difficult, the care you provide may include things like helping with daily tasks, managing finances, and organizing medications.

Try to learn as much as you can about the many symptoms of PD, and remember, PD symptoms can change from day to day, so a little patience will go a long way.

SOME HELPFUL ADVICE


Take the time to understand PD—and the person you’re caring for.

The person you care for may not be as aware of his or her changing abilities as you are.

For example, they may not understand their increased risk of falling, so your care may help them avoid a misstep, or an injury.


Here are additional tips to help you provide the best care you can:



Become knowledgeable on the many signs and symptoms of PD

Prepare for subtle changes in your loved one’s movement and mood

Find a movement-disorder specialist with training in PD

Attend healthcare provider’s appointments with your loved one, and take notes

Stay organized by noting appointments, medicines, and all side effects

Familiarize yourself with the terms of your own medical insurance

Exercise together—physical activity can help PD symptoms

Prepare for later-stage symptoms, from difficulty with planning to dementia

Consider changes that can make your home safer for your loved one

Discuss the possibility of full-time care or assisted living

As a Care Partner your own health matters, too


Your state of mind and overall wellbeing can affect your ability to provide good care. That’s why it’s so important for you to keep yourself healthy while you are taking care of someone with Parkinson’s disease. Exercising everyday can help manage the symptoms of PD.

TALKING ABOUT PD CAN help


Share your Care Partner experiences with others


Many people find that sharing their experiences with other Care Partners helps them cope with the day-to-day struggles of PD.

Talking about what you are going through with others can be informative and inspiring—and can help eliminate the feeling of isolation that can come with caring for a PD patient.

Support for Care Partners comes in many forms, so take the time to find the support that works best for you.

Sources of support for PD Care Partners include:


  • Your healthcare provider or a member of his or her staff
  • Live support groups and/or online support groups
  • Parkinson’s community events featuring experts in the field
  • Live webinars covering topics like diagnosis and treatment
  • Other Care Partners with more experience dealing with PD

Tips for good communication with your loved one


Like all strong relationships, your partnership starts with good communication. Here are some other ways to help strengthen that connection:

  • Whether it’s about emotions or symptoms, be as clear and direct as possible
  • Listening carefully can be just as important as speaking clearly
  • Use humor to help your loved one feel better about themselves and their situation
  • Stay in touch with the family, friends, and interests that you've always enjoyed

take a little time each day for yourself


A diagnosis of PD can be a life-changing experience—not only for your loved one with PD, but also for you.

Talk to your healthcare provider for more information about PD research, clinical trials, and efforts to find a cure


NEXT: Additional resources and support from XADAGO



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