Parkinsons Disease And What It Really Means To Us
The onset of Parkinsons disease is a tragic time for any patient and their families. As a degenerative condition, patients suffering from the condition are faced with no hope of recovery, but rather a slow and wearing process of loss of movement and co-ordination.
Most notably, the condition involves the tremor, whereby patients can be seen trembling uncontrollably, as well as loss in speech capabilities and gradually all functionality in its later stages.
Parkinsons disease is a disorder which takes effect on the central nervous system. A movement disorder, Parkinson's can be seen in four major symptoms; namely rigidity of muscles, a tremor of movement, slowing of overall movement (known as bradykinesia) and in certain instances loss of movement altogether.
The symptoms gradually become more and more apparent in sufferers, and are progressive, that is patients do not recover, or get better.
This degenerative condition is not contagious, nor passed genetically, and very little is known about the causes of most instances of the condition. Having said that, some cases can be explained through extreme drug abuse, cranial damage and other abuses of the body which have been shown to give rise to the condition.
The condition occurs as a result of the loss or destruction of brain cells which produce dopamine, a chemical associated with muscle activity. This chronic condition was first discovered and charted by James Parkinson in 1817, and concerns what he labelled as his patient's 'shaking palsy'.
A disease which has been a mystery to scientists and physicians across the world since its discovery, Parkinsons disease has no known cure, although there are ways to treat it and perhaps stall its development.
Additionally, there are a number of support groups for both sufferers and carers, providing some much needed reassurance that all is not lost, and there are still ways to work to help the condition, which can sometimes feel like a distant fantasy.
A particularly crushing aspect of the disease is the impact it can have on a patient's everyday life.
The simplest of physical tasks become impossible, leaving the sufferer eventually in need of round the clock care and attention. There is a present no way of knowing who will develop the disease, or to what extent, although reassuringly, scientists the world over are desperately trying to expand their knowledge of the condition and look for other treatments, and possibly even the elusive cure.
Sadly, for patients with Parkinsons today, there is no real way out, and it's best to try and remain as active and involved as possible in the normal daily routine to keep up morale, and keep the patient interested in life.
Such a demoralising condition as Parkinsons requires a lot of patience, and it can be particularly hard and frustrating to see a family member descend into such a state.
There are however, a variety of ways to significantly reduce the effects of the condition, and it is advisable for anyone worried about themselves or friend or family member to consult their physician for more information on the condition and what can be done to curb its onset.
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