More than half of Parkinson’s patients report that they have experienced varying degrees of pain and discomfort and research indicates that even in the early stages of the disease, seniors with Parkinson’s experience more pain for longer periods than those without the disease. Unfortunately, according to the National Institutes for Health (NIH), pain related to Parkinson’s is frequently under-treated.
If you provide care for an aging parent or loved one with Parkinson’s, the complex symptoms that arise as the disease progresses can be difficult to manage. Learn more about specialty Palm Beach Parkinson’s care for respite and assistance, and continue reading for information about Parkinson’s pain and how to help your aging loved one find relief.
Discomfort and pain in Parkinson’s patients tends to fall into five categories:
- Musculoskeletal Pain. The rigid and awkward postures that accompany Parkinson’s contribute to aching sensations and soreness, particularly in the hips, back and neck.
- Nerve Root Pain. Also known as radicular or neuritic pain, nerve root pain occurs when nerves are injured or compressed. The pain is characterized by a sharp, radiating sensation.
- Dystonia. The uncontrolled muscle spasms known as dystonia that Parkinson’s patients experience can be very painful. The pain comes from muscles forced into and held in unnatural positions.
- Restlessness. Known as akathisia, restless movements add to a patient’s discomfort and make it difficult to rest and relax.
- Central Pain. This type of pain is caused by changes in the brain due to Parkinson’s. The pain is often described as a stabbing or burning sensation.
When treating pain associated with Parkinson’s, health care professionals rely on detailed descriptions from the patient to help them identify the source of the pain. Physicians not only need to know where the pain is centralized and what it feels like but how the pain changes in relation to daily activities and medications. Try to keep a pain diary for your aging loved one, making note of what pain is experienced when. This will help give your loved one’s health care team the information they need to prescribe effective solutions. If you’re unable to provide care 24/7, Palm Beach 24 hour home care services are available and can ensure consistency of care, keeping track of pain, as well as diet plans, medication reminders and more.
In addition to adjusting dopaminergic therapy and taking painkillers, physical therapy and exercise programs can be effective at easing Parkinson’s pain. An in-home health care professional trained in Parkinson’s care can encourage activities that relieve stiffness and increase range of motion. Regular physical activity can go a long way towards reducing Parkinson’s pain.
For more information about home care in Palm Beach, please visit our home care website or contact us directly at 561-429-8292. Our Care Managers are on call 24 hours a day, and we offer complimentary no obligation consultations where you can learn more about our services from the comfort of your home. What are you waiting for? Take the first step toward peace of mind today.