According to health officials, if you are over the age of 60 you should be particularly vigilant about social distancing to avoid the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. For those of us with Parkinson’s disease, required social distancing is a double blow.
People with Parkinson’s are already experienced social distancers skilled at adjusting to a display of shuffling feet, shaky hands, and slow-as-molasses speech problems. The last thing we want is to be alone when we benefit so much from the support of community interaction.
During this health crisis as long as we are able to be independent and without virus symptoms, we can take control of being on our own.
What to do while you’re Social Distancing
• Make a list of the get-togethers you will arrange when it is possible. Let each person on your social list know that you are thinking of them with a note to “Save the Date” to meet up, leaving the date to be determined.
• Downsize! You’re housebound. Get rid of stuff you’ll otherwise trip over.
• Write up your bucket-list. A health scare makes you realize how time is short. You have lots you want to do.
• Gather your memories. There’s never going be another time that’s better to start your autobiography!
• Disinfect your walking poles, or exercise equipment and stretch your muscles. Movement is a Parkinson’s must!
• Communicate! Get on the phone with a friend every day. PD support is crucial!
The Parkinson’s Foundation warns “Stress can make PD symptoms worse. By focusing on your strengths, nurturing caring relationships, sharing your concerns, embracing healthy behaviors and your spirituality, you can better cope with the potential challenges of PD.”
Remember, your Parkinson’s community is rooting for you.