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Early Warning Signs of Parkinson’s Disease Can Be Scary

Identifying Parkinson’s disease signs can be scary, but it does take you one step closer to treatment. Here's what to do if you feel afraid.

Identifying Parkinson’s disease signs can be frightening – especially if you’re otherwise healthy. Parkinson’s disease affects over 60,000 Americans per year, mostly males over the age of 65. However, Parkinson’s disease can affect anyone at any time, including those under 40. If you are diagnosed with Parkinson's, a positive attitude can help determine your quality of life. Let's look at how to dispel fear and inspire hope after Parkinson’s disease signs become a diagnosis.

Parkinson’s Disease: Early Symptoms

Parkinson’s disease early warning signs include:

  • Changes in handwriting – especially if letters are small and cramped
  • Loss of smell
  • Tremors and shaking
  • Difficulty sleeping due to sudden and extreme movements that wake you up
  • Slowed movement
  • Muscle tension
  • Voice changes
  • Difficulty forming facial expressions
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Spells of dizziness or fainting

If you spot any of these initial symptoms of Parkinson’s disease– don’t panic. Breathe, and remember you’re not alone. Don’t attempt to diagnose yourself at home. Your doctor will assess your symptoms and make an informed diagnosis. From there, you have plenty of options to help control and treat Parkinson's disease, such as medication and occupational therapy.

What to Do If You’re Scared by Parkinson’s Disease Signs

It’s normal to feel scared if you spot the early warning signs of Parkinson’s disease. After all, Parkinson’s is a life-altering condition for which there is no cure. However, it’s important to act if you notice these changes listed above, partly so your doctor can rule out other causes. If you do have Parkinson’s disease, getting diagnosed early will help assure the best treatment possible.

If you are diagnosed with Parkinson’s, one of the first things you should do is to write down any questions you have. It's common to forget your concerns when you’re at the doctor’s office, so take some time to think about what you need to know, perhaps when relaxing at home or out walking by yourself. You may also want to discuss your worries and fears with a partner or close friend.

You should also beware of the Internet when researching Parkinson’s disease signs and symptoms. While the web can be a great source of information, you should always seek information from reputable sites – such as HealthyPlace, major health websites or the Michael J Fox Foundation. At this stage, it’s important to separate fact from fiction so that you know what to expect in the future.

How Not to Be Afraid of Parkinson’s Disease

If you have Parkinson's disease, you're bound to be afraid at times, particularly as your symptoms progress. However, the secret to living well with Parkinson's disease is not letting the fear override your determination to live a fulfilling life. As with many negative emotions, the best antidote to fear is connection – so don't try to go through this alone.

Parkinson's disease signs and symptoms can be incredibly isolating, so making connections is vital if you want to live a good life with the condition. Reach out to your friends and family, and don't be afraid to ask for help. Join online services such as Parkinson’s Social Network or find a Parkinson’s disease support group in your local area. If you're struggling with the emotional impact of Parkinson's disease, it would be wise to speak to a therapist who specializes in long-term illness. Alternatively, you can talk to a nurse or therapist at the National Parkinson’s Foundation Helpline by calling 1-800-4PD-INFO (473-4636).

article references

APA Reference
Smith, E. (2020, February 9). Early Warning Signs of Parkinson’s Disease Can Be Scary, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, March 31 from https://www.healthyplace.com/parkinsons-disease/treatment/early-warning-signs-of-parkinsons-disease-can-be-scary

Last Updated: February 18, 2020

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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