April 1st- April 4th: Pre-symptoms of PD | Importance of Early Diagnosis (view resources here)
April 5th- April 11th: Exercise & PD | PT, OT, & Speech | Building a Wellness Community
April 12th- April 18th: Young Onset Parkinson's | Women and PD | Care Partners
April 19th- April 25th: Mental Health and PD | Holistic Treatments | Nutrition
April 26th- April 30th: Treatment Options | Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) | Research
We partnered with Ruth Davidson Hahn & Company to bring you the Parkinson's Nebraska, 2021 Dance for Parkinson's Series. Each week during Parkinson's Awareness Month we will be releasing a new video in the series! Check back every Monday for the latest video!
Join Ruth Davidson Hahn & Company from your homes and have fun with the new Dance for Parkinson’s 2021 Series. There are five 30-minute classes, each with a different focus. In Dance for Parkinson’s you’ll enjoy doing dance based activities to music with Ruth, Sara and Vanessa. Together you will explore elements of different dance forms that spark the aesthetic imagination. Music energizes, enriches and empowers the movement. Welcome to a class that is rigorous, creative, and based in the Arts.
Dance for Parkinson’s utilizes the power of dance, music and creativity to improve mobility and quality of life. Dance for PD® is an internationally acclaimed method in which participants explore movement and music in ways that are enjoyable, mentally stimulating, and creative. There is no bad dancing in this class. No dance experience is required. The class is a comfortable pace. All levels of mobility are welcome.
These classes are taught by Ruth Davidson Hahn, professional choreographer, dancer, teacher and Stanley J. Wertheimer Fellow specially trained in the Dance for PD® method.
Feel Good Seated Class
(Ascending From Chair Option Offered)
Featured Fantasy Dance - Wish Upon a Star
Jazz Theme Seated Class Featured Jazz Dance
Cool (from West Side Story)
Jazz Theme Standing Class (With Seated Options) Featured Jazz Dance - Cool (from West Side Story)
Releasing April 19th
Releasing April 26th
Women and Parkinson's
According to the Parkinson's Foundation, "Parkinson’s disease (PD) affects an estimated 10 million men and women worldwide. Women have been shown to have a lower risk of developing PD, and research suggests that there are differences in the way that men and women experience Parkinson’s. Studies indicate that women diagnosed with PD report different symptoms, more often report side effects and changes in their symptoms throughout the day (“fluctuations”) and receive lower quality healthcare than men."
Parkinson's Disease: Men vs Women
Differences in Care Between Men and Women
The Parkinson's Foundation reports that women are less likely than men to be cared for by a Parkinson’s specialist, such as a neurologist or movement disorder specialist, and are also less likely to have a care partner. On the other hand, women with Parkinson’s are more likely to do the following:
All these factors mean that women may not have access to adequate Parkinson’s care.
To address the disparities that women with Parkinson's experience, the Parkinson's Foundation created the first national research and care agenda specific to women, Women and Parkinson's: Closing the Gender Gap in Parkinson's Research and Care. View the agenda here.
Role of Estrogen in PD
While it is unclear exactly how estrogen effects Parkinson’s, markers of estrogen exposure are linked to when women begin experiencing symptoms. An article published in the
Parkinson's Disease in Women and Men: What's the Difference?
"Risk of developing PD is twice as high in men than women, but women have a higher mortality rate and faster progression of the disease."
Symptoms of Parkinson's Men vs. Women
"When women are first diagnosed, tremor is usually the dominant symptom. The initial symptom in men is usually slow or rigid movement (bradykinesia)."
Women and Parkinson's with Dr. Michelle Fullard
YOPD Women's Council Series
The Davis Phinney Foundation YOPD Women's Council explores the unique experinces of women diagnosed with YOPD such as contraception, pregnancy, menstruation, menopause, horomoes, body image, and more. Watch the video series here.
Starting a Women’s Only Support Group
Are you interested in starting a women’s only Parkinson’s support group in your community? The Davis Phinney Foundation provides a great resource for women interested in starting a women’s only Parkinson’s support group. Get your free How to Start a Women’s Only Support Group facilitator guide here.
Sharon Krischer was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 2009 after several years of experiencing symptoms. Ever since, she has learned all she could about PD with the goal of not being defeated by the disease. She was often asked to speak about her experience with being a newly diagnosed woman with Parkinson's disease, so she started “Twitchy Woman’s Adventures with Parkinson’s” to encourage the exchange of ideas and solutions with other whose lives have been affected. Check some of the Twitchy Woman resources below:
My Adventures with Parkinson's website
Peer Support Program for Women
Sunday Mornings with Twitchy Woman
Young Onset Parkinson's Disease
The average age of Parkinson’s diagnosis is 65 years old. However, 10% of diagnoses occur before age 50 and 5% before age 40 and occurs in about 4% of the 1 million Americans diagnosed with PD. A diagnosis under the age of 50 is considered Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease. Those with YOPD often experience the disease and progression differently than those diagnosed later in life. There are specific considerations and resources for those with YOPD.
The symptoms of YOPD are similar to that of later onset PD:
Some of the differences experienced in YOPD are:
Many with YOPD are still able to work after a diagnosis, depending on the career field. But it is still important to develop a plan, become familiar with the ADA, and decide whether to disclose your diagnosis to co-workers. The Michael J Fox Foundation has developed a two-part guide to talking about YOPD at work:
Family Planning & Parenting
Plenty of women have successfully carried a healthy baby to term. It is possible to take birth control with Parkinson’s medications, but some adjustments might need to be made. Some couples may look into other forms of contraception.
The motor and non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s can make the logistics, both physically and financially, more challenging with Parkinson’s disease. But many people with PD are able to raise successful and happy children with the help of education and a strong support system. It can also be helpful to have conversations with children around PD and share in optimism whenever possible.
A diagnosis of a chronic disease may require a fresh look at financial planning. Things to consider are regular doctor visits and medication costs. It is a good idea to reevaluate long-term financial goals, life insurance coverage, and explore disability and long-term care insurance coverage.
Relationships and Marriage
Parkinson’s can impact relationships and communication. Talking openly and honestly around concerns and symptoms is key. Approaching the treatment of PD as a partnership can support both the person with PD and the care partner.
Young-Onset Parkinson's Disease
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Navigating the Challenges of Young Onset Parkinson's Disease
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Young Onset Parkinson's
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YOPD Council Series
This Davis Phinney Foundation webinar series explores During this panel, people diagnosed with YOPD share their stories about work, kids, relationships, non-motor symptoms, and more. Watch the series here.
Care partners play an essential role in the quality of life for people living with Parkinson’s. Whether a spouse, child, parent, or friend, they take on many responsibilities. Care partners are just that- partners in the management of Parkinson’s disease. While they are taking care of their loved one, it is just as important for them to take care of themselves. You can’t pour from an empty cup, right?
Role of the Care Partner
Care partners take on a number of responsibilities and roles in caring for their loved on with Parkinson’s including daily tasks, planning, and emotional support. The Davis Phinney Foundation provides a “small” list of some of the tasks care partners must learn how to do:
Care Partner Burnout
It is essential care partners prioritize taking care of themselves. It is a big change to care for a loved one and can take a toll physically, mentally, and emotionally leading to compassion fatigue. A strong support network is crucial for care partners as much as the person with PD.
Care Partner Summit | Cumbre Para Cuidadore
The Parkinson’s Foundation Care Partner Summit | Cumbre Para Cuidadores is designed with care partners in mind. It is recommended for anyone who cares for someone living with PD. This year, the Summit will take place online in partnership with the Parkinson’s Foundation PD Health @ Home program.
Learn more and register here.
Nebraska Caregiver Resources