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Parkinsons Support Group
Parkinsons Support Group - Caithness
The Welfare Visitor is happy to help anyone with Parkinsonís Disease. There is no obligation to join the society. The service is free. She can help you to learn about Parkinsonís Disease, tell you about what other services are available and what benefits you could apply for. She is also happy just to sit and talk to you or your family.
Parkinsonís Disease Society Ė United Kingdom
TEL 0171 931 8080
Helpline open Monday to Friday 10.00am Ė 4.00pm 0171 233 5373
The Societyís helpline is run by the Care Services Manager and manned by dedicated volunteers who offer a "listening ear" to anyone with Parkinsonís or their families who need to talk to someone, safe in the knowledge that their call is confidential and the person listening understands Parkinsonís.
The Societyís mission is the conquest of Parkinsonís Disease and the alleviation of suffering and distress it causes, through effective research, education, welfare and communication.
Parkinsonís is a progressive neurological disorder affecting learned voluntary movements such as walking, talking, writing and swallowing. There are three main symptoms: tremor, rigidity and bradykinesia (slowness of movement). However not everyone will experience all three symptoms. Parkinsonís results from the loss of a chemical messenger in the mid-brain. The cause is as yet unidentified and there is no known cure. Parkinsonís is not inherited nor is it contagious.
The incidence of Parkinsonís is approximately 1:500 in the general population, rising to 1:100 over the age of 65 and 1:50 over the age of 80. A little recognised fact is that 1:20 people are diagnosed are aged under 40. There are more than 120,000 people with Parkinsonís in the United Kingdom today and it is common in all parts of the world.
The main treatment for Parkinsonís is drug therapy. Because no two people with Parkinsonís are exactly alike, the drug treatment has to be tailored to the individual and the timing of the medication is as important as the dosage. With the optimum drug treatment, life expectancy for Parkinsonís is normal. Surgical techniques are also being researched. Management plays a very important part in the care of people with Parkinsonís and professions such as physiotherapy, speech and language therapy, and occupational therapy have an important role to play.
Help for carers is also vitally important.
PARKINSONíS DISEASE SOCIETY
Most of the Societyís income is derived from voluntary donations, bequests and fund raising activities. The Society operates a membership scheme but it is important to note that the Society exists to help all people with Parkinsonís and their families. It makes no distinction between members and non members in terms of the help that it offers.
The Care Services Department responds to the needs of people with Parkinsonís and their relatives and aims to improve the quality of their lives. Care services staff can provide support and advice on practical and emotional issues such as councelling, benefits and finance, driving, equipment and residential and respite care.
Information is available on all aspects of Parkinsonís, catering for the newly diagnosed, the more advanced Parkinsonian, their relatives, and for professionals involved in the care of people with Parkinsonís. The Society also publishes a quarterly newsletter, The Parkinson.
Medical research is funded by the Society in many different university departments and research institutions in the United Kingdom and at the Societyís Brain Research Centre at the Institute of Neurology in London. This research concentrates on trying to find a cure for Parkinsonís and discovering new and improved treatments. Welfare projects are also funded, aimed at establishing models of good practice and improving services for people with Parkinsonís and their families.
The Fundraising Department is concerned with developing national fundraising strategies, including an annual prize draw.
The Public Relations section is responsible for raising awareness of Parkinsonís and the Society including media relations, advertising, and Parkinsonís Awareness Week every April.
THE REGIONS AND AREA OFFICERS
The Area Officers encourage the setting up of branches or self-help groups to meet local needs, support branches in their activities and encourage links with other branches and the Society as a whole. They are also involved in welfare, education, information and fundraising work within their area.
Further information on the activities of the local branch can be obtained from the Hon. Secretary of the branch or from the Area Officer.
There is a special interest group for younger people with PD and the London or Stirling offices can give more details
LINKS AND MORE INFORMATION
(Special Parkinson's Research Interest Group) is the official