Alongside the physical symptoms of Parkinson’s, many people experience a range of mental health challenges. Current indicators are that nearly half of all people with Parkinson’s have experienced anxiety, apathy and/or depression. The first port of call is undoubtedly your medical team, but here we share our thoughts on what others have used to help:
Mindfulness and being in the moment
Mindfulness is maintaining a moment by moment awareness of your thoughts, feelings, sensations, surrounding environment. Staying present in the moment you are in, taking in all that’s there, training your mind to be mindful, can be helpful for PWP on a number of levels, helping us to deal with the cognitive challenges alongside the physical.
Here is a useful LINK from Parkinson's UK to get you started
Creativity: Photography, Dance, Writing, Art, Music
Without doubt, the power of using your talents, whatever they may be, to create something wonderful, stimulating and creative, can be enriching for anyone. The impact of taking part in an activity you love can often provide that feeling of being liberated from the condition for that moment you are engaged.
Here are some interesting links, some from extremely talented members of our Parkinson’s community, to stimulate your thoughts and encourage you to give something a go:
Leisure, creativity and creative therapies
Getting creative with Parkinson's by the Parkinson's Life podcast
Photography, regardless of which type of camera you use, helps you to view the world around you in a different light. The simplest of things become intricate when viewed through a lens and documenting life around you can be a worthwhile focus for the mind that can help lift us from a difficult day. What picture will you take today to remember it by?
The incredible David Plummer is totally inspiring
There are many dance groups available specifically for PWP - and many more beyond, that no matter what your level, you can attend. Here are just a few links to show you what is possible and to get you moving
BEAM Lab | May 2019 - Dancing with your Brain - BEAM Lab
Set dancing classes get Parkinson's sufferers moving during coronavirus lockdown
The power of the written word can help calm, relax, and inspire you. Writing down your thoughts in whatever way you can, often helps to ease anxiety, calm thoughts and emotions and bring a sense of peace to your mind.
There are blog links on our website that may encourage you to begin your own literary journey but here are some interesting pieces of literature that some of our Parkinson’s community have shared with the world - go and share yours:
Parkinson's book list | Global Update
Creating a work of art, however simplistic or complex, can be helpful on many levels for people with Parkinson’s - a means to explore feelings,reduce anxiety and increase self-esteem - or purely for the joy of it! Put some colour in your life and have a go:
Check out the amazing
Art & Parkinson's: Sketchbook 101
The best music is essentially there to provide you with something to face the world with. Whatever your taste in music, it has the power to engage, take us back to moments we thought we had long forgotten, delight us and bring us joy.
“Listening to and creating music stimulates different parts of our brains- the areas responsible for hearing, our awareness of rhythm and harmony, our emotions and sense of meaning, and physical movement.
“Connections between these areas can boost our motivation to get going and keep moving”.(PUK)
We are supremely fortunate in the Parkinson’s Community to have a wealth of talented people who create music. Create your own #happiness dj playlist, pick up that Ukelele, dust down your guitar, or listen to some tremendous tunes that others have shared:
The New Music - Feature Film - David Sangster talks The New Music
Neil Diamond - Sweet Caroline (Live At The Greek Theatre / 2012)