Parkinson's sufferer shares his experience with Warwick rotarians - The Stratford Observer

Parkinson's sufferer shares his experience with Warwick rotarians

Stratford Editorial 15th May, 2024   0

A PARKINSON’S sufferer has been sharing his experience of the disease with Warwick rotarians.

John Armstrong, chair of the Warwickshire and Leamington Parkinson’s group, visited Warwick Rotary Club to talk about the group’s work.

Around 153,000 people in the UK are living with Parkinson’s disease, with numbers increasing every year.

It is not known what causes it, but there are a range of symptoms including tremor, muscle stiffness or slowness of movement. Not everyone’s illness is the same, but all share the loss of dopamine producing nerve cells in the brain which affect movement, making eating, dressing, or using everyday objects difficult.

Parkinson’s can also cause a wide range of non-movement related symptoms including chronic pain, sleep disturbance, constipation and gut problems, memory concerns, anxiety and depression, all of which can significantly impact a person’s day-to-day life.

Each individual diagnosed with Parkinson’s experiences different symptoms in different ways and to varying degrees making treating them difficult. The disease is not curable, but drug treatments are being developed which can slow it down.

John first noticed over 20 years ago that his sense of smell had gone, then ten years ago his walking became unsteady. When he struggled with cutlery he sought advice and was diagnosed.

Now he keeps active with therapies such as singing and Nordic walking, as well as exercise in the gym.

The Warwick and Leamington group meets monthly at the Nelson Club in Warwick and have speakers and support each other.

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