Dancing as Therapy for Seniors with Parkinson’s

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Can you imagine seniors happily dancing to the songs of Elvis Presley, Paul Anka, the Platters, and the Beatles as well as other tunes that were popular in the ’50s and ’60s? Now imagine these seniors, all happily shaking and grooving, are also battling Parkinson’s disease (PD). Because of the unpredictable way symptoms can progress, there’s no standard treatment for Parkinson’s disease (PD). Even so, seniors with this condition often benefit from a combination of therapies. “Dance with PD” is a relatively new therapy program that encourages aging adults with Parkinson’s to dance every day to boost their health, balance, strength, and quality of life.

What Having Parkinson’s Disease Means

If your aging loved one has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, you’ve likely noticed symptoms such as loss of motor control, tremors, and stiffness. The good news is that a combination of healthy practices, such as daily exercise and a nutritious diet, can ease Parkinson’s pain while slowing the progression of other symptoms.

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. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable in-home care. Oshkosh, WI, families trust Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent and manage serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age. 

The Benefits of Dance as Therapy

Research suggests the pain and degeneration that comes with Parkinson’s can be alleviated by dance therapy. Dancing builds leg strength and increases balance, which can reduce instances of freezing and make your loved one less likely to fall if he or she begins to trip. In addition, learning new dance steps can strengthen cognitive abilities.

There are many reasons for seniors with Parkinson’s to dance, but here are the main ones:

  • Dance provides the physical activity and some of the therapeutic movements needed for pain relief and increased mobility.
  • Dance connects the body and the mind. The deliberate movements used in dance help aging adults adapt and adjust to the depletion of the neurotransmitter called dopamine, which is responsible for bringing the brain’s messages to the muscles.
  • As therapy, dance aids in relieving the stiffness and discomfort that comes with the disease. It also affords people with Parkinson’s the benefit of learning ways to manage motor block (commonly referred to as freezing) and dyskinesia (involuntary movements).
  • Dancing therapy can help with many different PD-related issues, including balance and stride length, side-to-side movement, posture, and coordination.

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 Oshkosh, 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.

Relief from Social Isolation

Various types of dance, such as ballroom dancing, provide a low-impact form of exercise that also gives seniors the opportunity to enjoy a little socializing. Through supervised dancing sessions, seniors with Parkinson’s disease can enjoy a relaxed social setting that can ease problems related to isolation and depression. They’re given opportunities to express their thoughts, communicate with like-minded adults, and engage in a fun group activity.

The proven benefits of dance therapy for adults with Parkinson’s can’t be denied. This fun form of pain management is arguably one of the best ways for seniors to stay social, active, and happy well into their golden years.

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 home care 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. Reach out to us at Home Care Assistance if you need compassionate professional home care for your loved one. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (920) 216-6276

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