Parkinson Awareness Open House
The Parkinson Association of Alberta hosted a Parkinson Awareness Open House at the Vermilion Super 8 on April 17. According to www.parkinson.ca over 100,000 Canadians are affected. Industry met with those afflicted with Parkinson’s disease, their families, and interested community members. Parkinson’s is a neurodegenerative disease that affects movement and balance, as well as other symptoms such as speech or sleep. Parkinson Association of Alberta’s Client Services Coordinator Sherry Bower-Gagne led a presentation, and guests noted similar symptoms. They were advised to take their medications at the same time everyday and to check with their pharmacist for possible reactions with food. “Sometimes you will have Parkinson’s for a long time before they diagnose it,” said Sherry Bower-Gagne. Others commented that simple tasks and movements are things that most people take for granted. Vermilion Shoppers Drug Mart Owner Anuj Chauhan said, “Sixty – 70 per cent of people living with Parkinson’s will develop depression or anxiety. Social supports play a huge role.” Bower-Gagne went on to describe options that are becoming more popular to regulate or increase levels of dopamine via pump or surgically inserted electrodes. She also noted other things patients can do including physical therapy, occupational therapy, and exercise. Overall, people enjoyed the opportunity to socialize and Vermilion’s Shannon Smart said, “There was some new information and I met some people that I didn’t know before. The pharmacist gave good information about medications I was on.” For more information, you can visit www.parkinsonalberta.ca or call 1-800-561-1911.