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Parkinson Awareness Month



INTRODUCTION:

Every significant illness seems to have a designated month. A month left to put aside for the cause during which time people give attention. They might go for a walk, raise money, donate certain colour, or go to a gathering. April is the PD community's month. Every April, the Parkinson’s Foundation engages the global Parkinson’s community to support Parkinson’s Awareness Month to promote a better understanding of the needs of people living with the condition.

Parkinson's is a neurodegenerative disorder that affects the brain and it is a chronic and progressive disease whose symptoms include tremors, stiffness, slow movement, and problems with balance and coordination. Parkinson's Awareness month is an opportunity for individuals, organisations, and communities to come together to support those living with Parkinson's disease and to raise funds for critical research into finding a cure. Additionally, it provides a platform for people to share their stories, educate others, and advocate for increased support and resources for those affected by Parkinson's disease.

This year the theme by Parkinson foundation is “Take 6 minutes to raise awareness for Parkinson’s disease”, #take6forPD because according to research Every 6 minutes, someone will be diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD) in the U.S.

HISTORY:

Parkinson’s Month was first observed in 1997 by the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, which is now known as the Parkinson’s Foundation. The month-long event is held to honour the birthday of Dr. James Parkinson, a British physician who first described the disease in 1817.

OBJECTIVES:

One of the primary goals of Parkinson's Awareness Month is to increase education about the disease. This includes educating individuals about the symptoms of Parkinson's Disease, how it is diagnosed, and the different treatments available. Parkinson's Awareness Month also provides a platform for organisations and individuals to raise funds for research into new treatments and therapies, as well as helping to provide support and resources for those living with Parkinson's disease.

There are various initiatives taking place during Parkinson's Awareness Month to help people to understand the impact the disease has on patients and caregivers. One such initiative is the "Parkinson’s passport" that people can fill out to help communicate their care needs to healthcare professionals. It is important for medical professionals to know about the symptoms the patients are experiencing, such as memory difficulties, swallowing issues, or mobility impairments, to provide a comprehensive treatment plan.

As part of Parkinson's Awareness Month, people are encouraged to engage in various events and activities to show support for Parkinson's patients and raise funds for charities working to find a cure for the disease. Different organisations organise walks, runs, and bike rides to raise funds and awareness of the disease.

CAUSES:

A common explanation for PD underlying cause is "interplay between genetic and environmental factors." Despite the fact that 90% of instances have no known genetic cause. It is believed that behavioural factors, particularly elevated intakes of iron, manganese, lutein, cholesterol, and saturated fats, as well as incidents of head trauma, add to the pathogenesis of idiopathic disease.

TREATMENT:

The most successful treatment for Parkinson's disease is the administration of levodopa, a metabolic source to dopamine. (L-dopa). Levodopa crosses the blood-brain barrier (a physiological barrier that prevents large molecules from entering the central nervous system) via special transport proteins and is converted to dopamine in the brain, mainly in the area known as the substantia nigra region. Other medications used to treat Parkinson's disease symptoms include agents that stimulate dopamine production in the brain, such as pergolide and bromocriptine, and agents that delay dopamine degradation, such as selegiline.

CONCLUSION:

Overall, Parkinson's Awareness Month aims to help people understand Parkinson's disease better, its impact on patients and caregivers, and ways to support those living with the disease. It also provides an opportunity to recognize the achievements of the Parkinson's research community and to support their work towards finding a cure for the disease. By increasing awareness and understanding of Parkinson's disease through various initiatives and events, we can work together to improve the lives of people affected by this condition.

References:

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