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The primary treatment for Parkinson’s disease is medication intended to boost the amount of dopamine in the brain. These medications reduce muscle rigidity, improve movement, and reduce tremors. However, many seniors continue to experience symptoms that can decrease quality of life and wish to explore natural alternatives as either a substitute to current medication or a supplement to their current medication regimen.
Physical exercise that emphasizes balance, posture, core muscle strength, and motor control, like yoga and tai chi, can be very beneficial for seniors with PD. These exercises can also relieve stress and help improve symptoms of depression and anxiety.
2. Coenzyme Q10
Taking 1200 mg/day of coenzyme Q10 may improve motor function without causing any side effects. This supplement affects the production of energy in the mitochondria of cells, and a defect in energy production in motor neurons may be an underlying cause of Parkinson’s disease.
Leading providers of senior home care in Santa Clarita often recommend acupuncture to clients with PD. Acupuncture can help relieve the muscle rigidity and associated pain that many elderly with PD experience. Acupuncture stimulates the production of natural painkillers, and it also seems to directly affect the way the brain perceives pain. Acupuncture may also be able to help relieve symptoms of depression.
4. Ketogenic Diet
Some evidence suggests that adopting a ketogenic diet may be helpful for neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease. On a ketogenic diet, the lack of dietary carbohydrates alters the metabolic pathways in cells, including neurons. As mentioned above, a defect in energy production in motor neurons may contribute to Parkinson’s disease. Altering the metabolic pathways through adoption of a ketogenic diet might bypass this defect. Seniors who adopt a ketogenic diet report improvements in symptoms after about 30 days.
Seniors who consume two to four cups of a caffeine-laden beverage daily, such as coffee, report improvements in motor symptoms. In order to avoid sleeping problems, coffee should be consumed at breakfast and lunch.
For more information on promoting the health and wellness of a senior loved one with Parkinson’s, reach out to Home Care Assistance. We understand the complex care needs of seniors with PD, and our comprehensive approach to Parkinson’s home care in Santa Clarita ensures your loved one will have the support he or she needs to maintain a high quality of living in the comfort of home through each stage of the disease. To learn more, call 661.259.9914 and speak with a friendly Care Manager.