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.
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.
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
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.
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.
Like all strong relationships, your partnership starts with good communication. Here are some other ways to help strengthen that connection:
A diagnosis of PD can be a life-changing experience—not only for your loved one with PD, but also for you.