What are the Early Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease?

Elderly Care in Longboat Key FL: What are the Early Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease?
Elderly Care in Longboat Key FL: What are the Early Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease?

In your role as a family caregiver, one of the most effective and important tools that you have is awareness. Part of this is understanding the risks that your aging parent is facing and being able to detect when your senior might be suffering from a serious health complication such as Parkinson’s disease. This level of awareness enables you to give your aging parent the type of care that is right for your senior to help reduce their risks or guide them in managing the conditions that do arise in their later years. Being able to recognize the early symptoms of disease can help you to detect the possibility of such illnesses early, which can ensure that your senior gets the medical attention that they need, and can create an approach to care that will help them to manage this condition effectively as they age in place.

Some of the early signs and symptoms of Parkinson’s disease include:

• Tremor. Approximately 70 percent of those who develop Parkinson’s disease will experience tremors. Most often this shaking will begin in the fingers, hands, or even the lip. This tremor often happens when their hand is relaxed.

• Diminished sense of smell. The sense of smell is an important part of how your parent interacts with the world around them. Having more difficulty smelling when it is not related to other issues such as a stuffy nose could be an early indication of Parkinson’s disease. Pay particular attention if your loved one has difficulty detecting specific smells such as dill or licorice.

• Changes in sleep behaviors. It is normal to have a bad night of sleep every once in a while, but if your parent has started struggling with sudden movements, thrashing, or kicking while sleeping, it may be something to bring up with their doctor.

• Mobility issues. Watch your parent as they move about their house. Slow movements, hesitation, and periods when they seem “frozen” or “stuck” might be early signs of this developing disease.

If your aging parent has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease or their symptoms have increased to the point at which you do not feel confident that you are giving them all of the care they need, now may be the ideal time for you to consider starting elderly care for them. An elderly home care services provider can be with your aging parent on a customized schedule that is right for their individual needs, challenges, limitations, and symptoms so that they can pursue an active, engaged, and fulfilling lifestyle while remaining safe, healthy, comfortable, and as independent as possible. This care provider can help your parent to understand the condition that they are facing and the instructions, guidelines, and prescriptions that were set forth for them by their doctor. They can then give them support, encouragement, and reminders to help them remain compliant with these instructions and make the lifestyle choices that are right for their needs. Not only does this help your senior to manage the symptoms that they are experiencing now, but also enables them to better prepare for the future symptoms that might develop later in their journey with the disease.


If you or an aging loved-one care considering hiring elderly care in Longboat Key, FL, talk to the friendly staff at Help at Home Healthcare.

Sarasota, Florida
(941) 388-3117

Bradenton, Florida
(941) 795-7000

Naples, FL 34102

Joyce Berk, RN, BSN, MSN

Administrator at Help at Home Homecare
Joyce Berk, RN, BSN, MSN has over 30 years of experience in health care administration, with 26 years dedicated to clinical and financial oversight of various home health organizations, including Medicare, hospice and private operations. After beginning her home health career with private home health care in Sarasota, Joyce served as Vice President and the Chief Operations Officer for a multi-site, multi-state, Medicare and Private home health organization in regions of the US. She then became Vice President of Clinical Operations of one of the country’s largest hospice operations located in the Tampa area. Prior to leading Help At Home’s private initiative, Joyce initiated multi-site start-up home care operations, ensuring regulatory compliance and licensure, with a strong focus on customer service. Most recently, she held the position of Chief Compliance Officer with concentration on quality improvement of a large Florida based Medicare multi-site organization.

Joyce received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Ohio State University and her Master’s in Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing from Case Western Reserve University’s Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing. There, she a assumed a faculty and administrative role and later received Hospice Administrator Certification. Her educational background, years of broad-based home care leadership with emphasis on continual improvement and customer service qualifies her to lead Help At Home Homecare in becoming an exceptional provider of private home care services in Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, Lee and Collier Counties.

Joyce lives in Sarasota with her husband, has three grown daughters and seven grandchildren.