When I think “Parkinsons” I think tremors, bradykinesia, rigidity, freezing of gait and:
Now I’ve got you singing too. Go ahead and DANCE! I’ll wait….
But there are lesser well known symptoms, although they are fairly common as well. The ones that I watch and screen for are gut troubles, sleep disorders and now I’ll add optical and visual difficulties. There are quite a few, some of them from the Parkinsons itself, and some from the treatment of the motor symptoms. Here’s a table of the 6 most common and what the realm of medicine can do about it. Some of them a therapist can spot and manage, others will require referral out to be appropriately cared for. Remember though: just RECOGNIZING a problem can go a long way in improving a person’s quality of life. As therapists, we may the first ones that spot these things, since our patients spend a lot of time with us and get comfortable, they tend to tell us things that they don’t tell other medical folk.
I do encourage you to read the whole article on this in particular, as there is no way I can just summarize everything in there. There’s a lot of good info if I’ve whet your appetite.