Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disease of the brain. It usually occurs in older people and severely limits mobility.
To date, the causes of Parkinson's disease are not fully understood. Parkinson's disease usually progresses slowly, so that those affected can lead a largely independent life for a long time after diagnosis.
The following symptoms are typical of Parkinson's disease:
Gradually, certain functions of the central nervous system become impaired due to a lack of dopamine production. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that enables the conduction of "messages" between neurons. This deficiency leads to various motor function disorders. However, very quickly over the course of the disease, neurons in other brain regions, which are independent of dopamine production, are also affected. Parkinson's can also be caused by other neurological diseases, such as dementia.
There is currently no cure, but there are effective options that can relieve symptoms. These include medications, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, neuropsychology and speech therapy.
Physiotherapy aims to maintain joint and muscle function. This can improve coordination and restore balance. With the help of strategies to improve movement control, gait/locomotion is positively influenced.
In occupational therapy, treatments are carried out to restore the patient's independence as much as possible. This includes techniques for personal hygiene and dressing.
The therapy also focuses on the following points:
In order to maintain general mobility, the patient is given a variety of exercises or suitable sporting activities:
Neuropsychology is used to train existing skills in order to rehabilitate and/or compensate for impaired cognitive abilities.
Neuropsychological care focuses on the following points:
Different approaches are used to achieve this:
Speech therapy sessions focus on improving speech, voice and swallowing disorders.
The following therapies are used during the sessions:
Alternative means of communication can also be introduced to help patients better communicate and interact with the environment.