A series of free events aimed at helping those living with Parkinson’s Disease will take place in Waterford City over the coming months.
The ‘Helping People with Parkinsons’ course, which is the first of its kind in Ireland, was recently launched at the Edmund Rice Centre in Waterford.
New Ross native Ann, is one of the roughly 8,000 people across Ireland who are currently living with Parkinson’s Disease.
The condition is caused by the degeneration of nerve cells in a part of the brain that controls movement, and can lead to difficulties eating and sleeping.
Ann says that being diagnosed with Parkinson’s was traumatic: “I was going to go into hibernation until a friend sat me down and said it was all in my head, and it was – you have to live with it.”
County Waterford man Michael says Parkinsons can lead to bowel problems and difficulty sleeping and moving: “A lot of people think it’s the shakes, but it’s a lot more than that there’s the constipation…when you’re awake you have to consciously swing your hands, a lot of people with Parkinsons look really rigid”.
Tramore native Irene Treacy is behind the ‘Helping People with Parkinsons’ course, which will run over the next number of weeks and is also the founder of ‘Smovey’ an exercise programme for people with the disease.
Irene has been working with people with Parkinson’s over the past twi years and says that services are lacking in Ireland at present.
The ‘Helping People With Parkinson’s course will focus on treating the condition through diet, exercise and cognitive therapy.
Nutritionist Gemma Kehoe says healthy eating can have a big role in treatment of the disease.
David Wade is a Tramore based Clinical Psychotherapist and is one of those who’ll be taking part in the course. He says that mental outlook is important.
For more information check out www.smoveyhealth.com