A Parkinson's Diagnosis is a big adjustment

Parkinson's Disease Is a Major ADjustment For the family

Parkinson’s disease comes with a host of challenges for both the individual and their caregivers. When your parent is diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, decisions regarding their care are often difficult to make. While some individuals do require a nursing care facility, many can live in their own homes with assistance from adaptive devices, furniture, and outpatient medical care.

CONCERNS

and facts

Injuries are common among people with Parkinson’s disease (PD), occurring most often in bedrooms (30%), living areas (19%), and kitchens (15%). People with Parkinson’s disease often fall when they lose their balance either due to muscle weakness, vision impairment, or home hazards, which cause them to trip or stumble.

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LIVING

FAMILY AREA ADJUSTMENTS

Take time to widen spaces between objects so that there is plenty of space to navigate.
A common hazard is wires, extension, USB, TV cords, etc. Plug appliances into the nearest outlets and tape cords to the molding along the walls to keep them off of the floor.
Provide chairs with firm backs and raised seat cushions to add height and support to make the sitting down and rising process easier.
A parent with PD has a hard time controlling fine motor skills, which makes turning on lamps and small switches difficult. Consider voice-activated lights with LED bulbs or a Hue system.

FALL CONCERNS

PREVENT COMMON INJURIES

  • Beds located too far from the bathroom
  • Cluttered floor space requiring turns and maneuvering to get where the person is going  
  • Narrow entrances to rooms and bathrooms 
  • Inadequate lighting 
  • Beds being too high from floor 
  • Uneven floor surfaces, Carpets or rugs that can be tripped over 
  • Uneven floor surfaces 
  • Lack of handles or assistive devices to help a person turn or sit down 

FALL CONCERNS

2. PREVENT COMMON INJURIES

  • Beds located too far from the bathroom
  • Cluttered floor space requiring turns and maneuvering to get where the person is going  
  • Narrow entrances to rooms and bathrooms 
  • Inadequate lighting 
  • Beds being too high from floor 
  • Uneven floor surfaces, Carpets or rugs that can be tripped over 
  • Uneven floor surfaces 
  • Lack of handles or assistive devices to help a person turn or sit down 

WASHROOM

QUICK BATHROOM HACKS

  • Just like the chairs, invest in a raised toilet seat and safety railsA person with PD will reach for whatever is nearby, so those items need to be sturdy enough to prevent a fall.
  • Remove or modify items that require fine motor skills. Consider adding a long handle faucet extension to the sink.   
  • Water makes everything more slippery!  Put down a non-skid bath matadd grab bars, a transfer bench  or shower chair . 
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THE KITCHEN

KEEP FOOD PREP SAFE

Someone with Parkinson’s disease can have a hard time with balance and standing. Make the kitchen a place your parent can utilize by lowering countertops or enable them to work from a kitchen table. 

  • Some small ease-of-use products that can make a BIG difference are electric can openers, bottle and lid openers, or a basic food processor for cutting up veggies.  
  • A spike board can make chopping and cutting easier without a food processor. 

PD CAN BE OVERWHELMING

Parkinson’s Disease can be overwhelming, but fortunately, we offer many products and solutions to assist your parent and keep them safe so they can maintain their independence at home as long as possible. An Occupational Therapist can provide a list of photos of recommended modifications and assistive devices, which you can send to us. We will contact you within 48 hours with a customized action item list specific to your unique needs and situation. Let us help your loved ones age gracefully at home by contacting us now.

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