In some of my previous articles, I covered aspects of taking care of seniors during Covid times, and how to deal with anxiety and stress. Nature is quite strange. However painful the task, taking care of our children comes naturally to us. But, when it comes to taking care of our elders, the very ones who spent sleepless nights in bringing us up, the task seems like a punishment. A source of anxiety, stress, angst, and frustration. But this is how nature created us, and while we may all have heard the admirable mythical story of Shravankumar, not many of us can live up to the standards set by him. For the affording, hiring a care giver is an alternative.
However, even though the lockdown has eased, not many of us are comfortable in allowing outside help into the house or within proximity, even if it means – like every other task – just do it ourselves. At least, this task earns us their blessings. There are over a dozen of senior related situations that demand extra care and attention, Parkinson’s-disease is one of them. There is extra challenge involved in imparting care, as this disease relates to the motor functions, and requires a fair deal of physical intervention to ensure the person afflicted does not come to harm. Compounding the issue, the symptoms are not constant or time-based ones, and can be triggered at any time.
Named after the British physician who first described it in the early 1800s, this progressive neurological disorder. Three-quarters of all Parkinson’s-Disease cases begin after the age of 60, though age is only one risk factor. Men are more likely than women to develop Parkinson’s. Researchers believe the disease is caused by a combination of genetics and environmental factors, including exposure to toxins. Research suggests traumatic brain injuries may also play a role. Symptoms start gradually, sometimes starting with a barely noticeable tremor in just one hand.
Tremors are common, but the disorder also commonly causes stiffness or slowing of movement. Tell-tale signs for early detection of Parkinson's disease, a person’s face may show little or no expression; arms may not swing when the person is walking; speech may become soft or slurred. Parkinson’s disease symptoms worsen over time.
Medically, Parkinson’s disease can’t be cured. Modern medications might significantly improve your symptoms. Occasionally, doctors may suggest surgery to regulate certain regions of the brain to control the symptom. Signs and symptoms can be different for everyone. Symptoms often begin on one side of the body and usually remain worse on that side, even after symptoms begin to affect both sides.
Here’s a list of Parkinson’s signs and symptoms to watch out for:
Tremor: A tremor, or shaking, usually begins in a limb, often in the hand or fingers. One may rub the thumb and forefinger back and forth, known as a pill-rolling tremor. The hand may tremble when it’s at rest.
Slowed movement (bradykinesia): Over time, Parkinson's disease may slow movement, making simple tasks difficult and time-consuming. Steps may become shorter when walking. It may be difficult to get out of a chair. One may drag feet while attempting to walk.
Rigid muscles: Muscle stiffness may occur in any part of the body. The stiff muscles can be painful and limit the range of motion.
Impaired posture and balance: The posture may become stooped, or one may experience balance problems as a result of Parkinson’s disease.
Loss of automatic movements: Decreased ability to perform unconscious movements, including blinking, smiling or swinging of arms when walking.
Speech changes: The person may speak softly, quickly, slur or hesitate before talking. The speech can be more of a monotone rather than have the usual inflections.
Writing changes: It may become hard to write, and writing may appear small
COVID-19 infection appears to worsen some symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, requiring adjustments to therapy, according to a recent case studies published in the journal “Movement Disorders”, the worsening of the disease may happen through several different mechanisms, such as interactions with the dopaminergic system in the brain or through systemic inflammatory responses.
Although Parkinson’s patients are not more likely to be infected by COVID-19 than the general population, being older puts them at risk for more severe infections. Also, a higher mortality rate due to COVID-19 has been described in advanced Parkinson’s patients, and tied to older age and longer disease duration.
How to take care of elderly with Parkinson’s disease?
At each stage, it’s essential to get great data about your adored one’s meds, medications, and conceivable reactions so you comprehend what’s in store regarding social and physical changes. Parkinson’s can influence engine abilities from every day can enable parental figures to keep up their understanding and be active. A major issue for parental figures is that their cherished one can put their socks on one day however not the following. They are not obstinate. You’ll feel much contrastingly about the circumstance if you understand that it’s simply part of living with Parkinson’s ease.
To enable your adored one to keep up their independence to the extent that this would be possible, enable them to do what they can accomplish for themselves that day, and comprehend that they may achieve errands more gradually than before.
Now here are some practical ways to control the symptoms without any special medication. Do note, this advice is complimentary to the advice of the patient’s medical attendant and not a substitute. If you must, do seek medical advice, but likely, you may be dissuaded as medical science has little or no understanding or patience for accepting or trying alternative holistic healing methods. However, having applied this knowledge on myself, I know it has helped me personally. Since, it requires only external application there are neither side effects nor any short or long-term damage to the body.
Symptoms: Tremors of limbs for a long period of time, staring look, difficulty in moving, uncoordinated walk, dizziness, occipital stiffness, cramps in arm and feet and tiredness.
Pressure points for treatment: L 8, Sp 6, St 36, and CV 4 ↑all
For tremors of head: H 5, 7, St 36, Sp 5↑all, L 3, 16 ↓ both
Symptoms: Obesity, unco-ordinated walk, staring eyes, dizziness, yellow phlegm, stiff neck and back.
Pressure points for treatment: CV 12, B 20 ↑ both, St 40, Sp 6, 9, L 3, ↓ all
Symptoms: Thin body, tremor of head, jaw and limb with marked amplitude, clenched teeth, cramps in limbs, difficulty in walking, clumsiness of walking, staring eyes, dizziness and tinnitus. Pressure points for treatment: L 3 ↓, L 8, CV 4, K 3, Sp 6, B 18, 10, ↑ all
Symptoms: Tremor of limbs, difficulty in moving and other symptoms as given above.
Pressure points for treatment: L 3, Tw 5, G 20, Li 11, G 34, H 3 ½, ↕
For trembling arms & legs: Li 4, 10 ↕, St 31, 36, 41, G 31, G 41 ↕
Probe pain points with a jimmy and the painful meridian points mentioned above. Stimulate for about 20 seconds and then paste white side of Byol magnet touching the tape at points.
For more details about treatments, log on to www.artofselfhealing.in
(From increasing metabolism to overcoming physical problems, Prof Luthria speaks about the art of self-healing through simple techniques. For more information on treatments and remedies, visit www.artofselfhealing.in)