Our speakers bureau would be happy to provide
an educational and motivational presentation titled
"The Power to Fight PD: Today, Tomorrow, Together."
If your community organization is looking for a speaker,
please give us a call at 713-203-8880
or email firstname.lastname@example.org
What is Parkinson's disease?
Perhaps from your childhood you may recall a grandparent whose hands would shake uncontrollably. Or an elderly neighbor who appeared to walk with very small, shuffling-like steps. Or perhaps you have a friend whose voice is very weak and it is hard to understand what the person is saying. These could all be symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD).
Parkinson's disease is a degenerative neurological disease that can affect a person's ability to perform common, daily activities. For some unknown reason, the brain does not produce enough of a neurotransmitter called "dopamine" and the result is a loss of motor and non-motor functions. PD is a progressive disease that typically worsens over time. Currently there is no known cure.
What are the symptoms of PD?
Where to begin? The list is long. In fact, PD can look very different among the many people who are living with this condition. One of our PD fighters in the Brazos Valley described it this way -- "Take 100 sheets of paper and write one symptom on each sheet. Put all the pieces of paper into a bag and shake it up before pulling out 5 random symptoms. Those 5 symptoms will describe one person with PD, but the next person could have a completely different set of symptoms."
Some typical signs of PD include tremors (a form of rhythmic shaking of the hands or legs), rigidity of the muscles, slowness of movement, stooped posture, lower voice projection and freezing of gait (the sudden inability to make the feet and legs move forward while walking). And if that is not enough for a person to cope with, PD can also cause sleep disruption, muscle cramping, anxiety, fatigue and depression.
Who gets Parkinson's disease?
There doesn't seem to be a clear explanation as to why some people get Parkinson's disease. There are an estimated 1 million Americans diagnosed with PD and more than 10 million people worldwide. It most commonly occurs after the age of 50, but approximately 10% of people with PD were diagnosed before the age of 50. Actor Michael J. Fox is an example of someone who has early onset PD.
How do you cope with PD?
Parkinson's disease may be a life sentence, but it should not be considered a death sentence. There is so much that can be done to help a person deal with the challenges brought on by a diagnosis of PD.
We believe everyone should be allowed to fight back against the symptoms of PD. It isn't easy. It takes determination and willpower that at times may seem unimaginable.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with PD, we encourage you to reach out and ask for help from our team at the Robert Conte Foundation.
We live with Parkinson's.
We are people with PD.
We are caregivers for people with PD.
We are doctors who treat people with PD.
We are families living with PD.
We understand where you are coming from.
Build a Network of Support
No one needs to fight this disease alone. Studies show that people who connect with others will live happier and more content lives. Our Foundation supports a network of people in the Brazos Valley who have PD.
Commit to Exercise
A fitness program can build your endurance, improve balance and increase flexibility. Find a program that works for you. It should be something you look forward to doing and will surround you with people you enjoy being with.