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5 Fantastic Activities for Seniors Living with Parkinson’s Disease

By Mark Schmidt, 9:00 am on November 18, 2019

Parkinson’s can pose mobility and psychological challenges, making it difficult for seniors to perform the activities of daily living. Neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s can make even the simplest of activities challenging. However, there are a number of fun activities that can stimulate the senses while enhancing mobility, balance, and visual-spatial skills. Here are some of the top activities aging individuals with Parkinson’s can enjoy.

1. Card Games

A diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease doesn’t mean your senior loved one needs to give up playing his or her favorite card games. Card games enhance mental stimulation and hand-eye coordination. If your loved one has cognitive deficits, playing cards may enhance mental sharpness. Playing cards also allows seniors to socialize with friends and family, which prevents social isolation and depression. 

Caring for a loved one with Parkinson’s can be extremely challenging, and a compassionate professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support. If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a homecare agency you can trust. Our caregivers are available 24/7, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our in-home care services.

2. Video Games

Video games aren’t just for younger people. Seniors with Parkinson’s can enjoy this stimulating hobby even as neurological skills diminish. When people with Parkinson’s disease play video games, they use their hands and arms to control the games. If your loved one has issues with fine motor skills, he or she can still play video games. Video games with sports themes typically involve physical activity and movement, which promotes circulation while reducing episodes of muscle spasticity and rigidity.

3. Singing

Singing is a beneficial activity for aging adults with Parkinson’s because it enhances pulmonary function and strengthens the muscles of the diaphragm. It can be even more fun to invite family members and friends over for a group sing-along. Encourage your loved one to join a church choir or take a singing class at the local park district. 

Many seniors in the early stages of Parkinson’s are able to live on their own, but they may need a bit of help with the everyday tasks of life, such as exercising and preparing nutritious meals. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional elder care. Tucson, AZ, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.

5. Walking

Walking is a safe and therapeutic activity for aging adults with Parkinson’s disease. If your loved one is experiencing cogwheel rigidity or has balance issues, he or she will need a person to accompany him or her while walking to prevent falls and injuries. Walking tours of zoos, museums, parks, hiking trails, and forest preserves can provide visual stimulation and boost cognitive function. Make sure to check with the physician before encouraging your loved one to try a new physical activity. Also, provide properly fitting shoes that are comfortable and supportive and have nonskid soles.

5. Karate

While medications can help seniors manage the symptoms of Parkinson’s, there’s no known cure. Karate is thought to help with movement disorders, balance impairment, stiffness, and muscle pain. It may also slow the progression of muscle wasting while enhancing circulation to the brain. Karate can also relieve anxiety, depression, and sleep disorders, which are common in those with Parkinson’s disease. While karate is considered a safe and effective activity for people with neurodegenerative diseases, talk to the doctor if your loved one has severe osteoporosis, vertigo, cogwheel rigidity, vision impairment, or a herniated disc in the neck or back.

Mobility issues in the advanced stages of Parkinson’s disease can make caring for aging adults increasingly challenging. If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Tucson, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more. Rely on the professionals at Home Care Assistance to provide high-quality compassionate care for your loved one. Give us a call today at (520) 276-6555 to learn about our flexible in-home care plans.