THE PATIENT

So you have been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.

The very idea that you have a degenerative brain disease is overwhelming for a week or two, You feel like you have reached you highest point in your life and now its all down hill. Questions flood your head at a dizzying pace. How long can I remain  independent? How long until I am frozen in wheelchair unable to move? Do I have enough funds to retire? Self-pity and depression infect your soul. Why me? Will my family, friends and colleagues think I am mentally deficit? At this early stage, you able to conceal your tremors during family gatherings and business meetings, but it’s getting worse. You wonder how long you can keep it a secret…

Is your life over?

Without a doubt you have been dealt a bad hand. There’s so much information and so little clarity how to proceed. Well, you’ve come to the right place, because all Parkinson’s patients have wrestled with these tough issues. Here you will find a way forward. Your attitude, commitment, purposeful life and determination will largely determine whether you thrive or dive. Your destiny is completely in your control.

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Can you keep a Secret

There’s a decision you need to make when to share that you have Parkinson’s disease. It’s ok to take to wait a month or two to deal with being diagnosed. It’s natural to feel vulnerable and  uncomfortable about having these discussions. Telling people you have Parkinson’s does come with anxiety and in addition probably will be emotional. In general, we suggest telling people sooner than later. It  is always better to share than keeping your condition secret.  It’s exhausting to be constantly aware of your  symptoms and masking your condition. and wondering if anyone noticed. It results in you deciding to staying home instead of being social. It takes a toll on your health and relationships. Make it a priority to tell your family as soon as possible. Afterwards you will be relieved and you will have  a safe space where you can be yourself. You will be surprised how people will offer to help you. It’s an important component of your support network. The same applies to the workplace, with the added benefit of work purchasing assistive aids  so you can continue to  efficiently work. It also helpful if you need to take some time off. They key is to share as soon as possible., afterwards a huge weight will be lifted off your shoulder.  

Be Positive

Research has shown that outgoing positive individuals live up to 7 years longer. Keeping positive is one of  life’s greatest lessons. Having a positive outlooks is essential for thriving with Parkinson’s Disease. Its only human to need to belong to your  community. Long term goals provide purpose, require getting out of the house, being social, provide accomplishment and fulfillment. It’s important to keep busy and keep your mind engaged. These are all critical aspects to being positive. Maintaining a positive outlook is the most important aspect of your  Parkinson’s treatment. Here are some methods that can help you.

REMEMBER

You are lucky!

Lucky U.S.A.

Lucky you live in the United States, Great doctors & Medicine.

Wonderful Technology

Lucky to have smart watches, smartphones & tablets making life easier.

You're best Days are ahead

This is 100% true. You just need to acknowledge great days and remind yourself often.

Suck it up buttercup!

There children with far worse ailments and they are happy! No excuses!

Daily Mantra

A daily mantra declaring today to be a great day can set you on the right path.

Challenge yourself

Don't settle for less, ruse to the challenge. When you amaze yourself you will be overjoyed in happiness.

Getting out of bed is half the challenge

It is common to wake up and be stiff and think today is going to be tough. You can barely roll out of bed. We recommend getting up, no matter how tough it is, to get out of bed, stretch and have a breakfast. I guarantee you will be your normal happy self once you get moving. I am always amazed at how quickly I transition to smiling. Eventually you can train your mind to skip the wakeup blues and be positive when  you wake

Exercise

Exercise is essential to thrive with Parkinson’s. Exercise has been shown to slow the progression of Parkinson’s Disease. Exercise helps maintain strength and flexibility which is critical to maintain mobility and independence. Exercise benefits are greater at earlier  stages, so do not wait. Get started today! The key is to make  sure the trainer specializes working wish Parkinson’s patients.  Below are some national programs, which is a fantastic way to get started.

Branded Exercise Programs

Branded exercise programs are nationwide Parkinson’s specific exercise programs that benefit patients.  It’s a good place to start to meet other outgoing patients and to establish expectations. 

LVST Big is the original Parkinson’s exercise program with most certified trainers.

PWR Moves is a fast growing alternative to LVST Big. 

Rock Steady Boxing builds on the popularity of incorporating punching into workout routines.

The Costs

Parkinson’s disease is unique in that 95% of medical expenses are paid by Medicare because Parkinson’s patients are typically retired, 65 years or older  and on Medicare. As Parkinson’s Disease progresses treatments tend to increase in costs as your dopamine decreases. We recommend having a supplemental insurance. Late stage Deep Brain Stimulation surgery may require you paying your full deductible out of pocket for the surgery while late stage Duopa  has low surgery costs but the monthly costs of the Duopa can exceed $15,000. This may require you to apply for a nonprofit to pay the difference. Having a Movement Disorder Specialized Neurologists will give you a better chance obtaining insurance approvals. This is routine fo them.