Tuesday, January 27, 2009

What is Parkinson's?

No one can say for certain what will happen to you if you have Parkinson's disease. Everyone is different, and the way the disease affects you may be different from the way it affects someone else.
Some people hardly notice their symptoms in the early stages of Parkinson's and lead a full life for many years
But symptoms usually get worse as time goes on and your brain makes less and less of the neurotransmitter dopamine.

What is Parkinson's disease?
There's no cure for Parkinson's disease. But there are treatments that work well. Some work so well that you may forget about your symptoms for a while.

What treatments work for Parkinson's disease?
But the disease will eventually progress, and the drugs might not work as well when this happens.[1]
You may also get other problems because of Parkinson's disease. For example, you might feel depressed, find it hard to get to sleep or have problems chewing and swallowing.

Other problems linked with Parkinson's disease.
These problems can be treated with drugs or sometimes with special kinds of therapy. For example, if the muscles in your face are stiff and make speaking difficult, speech and language therapy can help you adapt the way you talk.
Many people want to know how they will be in two or three years' time. But the truth is that no one can say for certain. Science and medicine change all the time as we find out new things about how the brain works. In the next few years, new drugs or surgery may become available that we know very little about today.
The important thing is to keep positive. There's also a lot you can do to stay healthy.[2]
Exercise: Regular exercise can improve your balance and coordination.[4] It can also stop you from feeling depressed and help with constipation.
Attend support groups: You can get advice and emotional support by meeting other people with Parkinson's and their care givers.
Stay active: It seems to help people with Parkinson's to keep doing the things they enjoy.
If you're caring for someone with Parkinson's disease, you may need support too.[3] If you feel you can't cope or you get depressed, see your GP. They may be able to put you in touch with local support groups and organisations that offer help in the home

Neurotransmitters are chemicals that help to carry messages between nerve cells. Serotonin, dopamine and noradrenaline are all neurotransmitters.
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, which is chemical that helps messages pass between brain cells and other cells. Dopamine plays a role in your mood, and your physical movements.

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