Tips for Helping Your Senior Cope with the Emotional Impact of Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease can be extremely emotionally challenging for those living with it. The symptoms and challenges of this condition diminish function and independence, which can leave your parents suffering from a variety of mental and emotional health consequences including depression, anxiety, bitterness, and even loneliness and isolation. As their family caregiver, it is important that you take the steps to help your parent cope with these emotional effects so that they can move forward and progress through their disease in the healthiest, most fulfilling way possible.

Senior Care in Hudsonville MI: Coping with Parkinson's

Senior Care in Hudsonville MI: Coping with Parkinson’s

Use these tips to help your senior cope with the emotional impact of Parkinson’s disease:

  • Acknowledge what they are going through and validate their emotions. Reassure your aging parent that it is normal for them to experience a range of emotions and that they have the right to feel any emotion that they do. Remind them, however, that some emotions can be damaging if they are not addressed effectively and let them know that you are there for them to help them cope.
  • Admit the emotions that you are going through as well. Letting your parent know that you are experiencing an emotional reaction to their progression of Parkinson’s disease can help them to feel less alone. This can also encourage them to be more open and honest about what they are going through so that they can seek ways to manage it effectively and constructively.
  • Help your parent to identify the specific issues that are causing them to feel depressed, anxious, or afraid. Address each of these individually so that they have less of an impact on your aging parent. For example, if they are afraid that they are going to get hurt due to their physical challenges, talk to them about introducing senior care into their care routine, and work together to make meaningful modifications throughout their home to create a safer and more accessible environment.
  • Find ways to spend quality time with your aging parent doing things that are fun and stimulating for both of you. Help them to recognize that even if their abilities have changed they can still live a full and satisfying life.
  • Encourage your senior to participate in a support group or to find a professional counselor that they feel compatible with. Having a safe place to discuss their emotions and get support and advice can be invaluable to your parent’s mental and emotional health, and their perspective as they progress through the disease


Starting senior care for your aging parent can be one of the best decisions that you make for them during their later years. An in-home senior care services provider can be with your parent on a customized schedule to ensure that they have continued access to the level of care, support, and assistance that is right for them. Through a set of highly personalized services this care provider will help your parent address their individual challenges, needs, and limitations. They will also help your parent to pursue a lifestyle that is as active, engaged, and independent as possible as they age in place. As their family caregiver, this can give you tremendous peace of mind knowing that your parent will be able to live their highest quality of life while also staying happy, healthy, and comfortable.

If you or someone you know needs help with senior care in Hudsonville, MI, contact Gauthier Family Home Care. We provide quality and affordable home care services in our community. Call us at (616) 258-2300 for more information.



About Dan Gauthier

Dan Gauthier has a long and successful business pedigree. He spent his college years working in the restaurant business and worked in various executive management positions at Universal Forest Products, Inc. over a span of 17 years, and Therm Technology / Family Safety Products for 12 years.

When the recession hit in 2008 Dan was “downsized” from UFP and spent a few years consulting for local companies Amway and Cascade Engineering. During this period Dan’s in-laws were experiencing catastrophic health problems and it required Dan’s wife Marion to focus full time on caregiving for her mother. Marion enlisted help from a local home care agency and it did not go well. This experience led to the creation of Gauthier Family Home Care, a home care agency that is uniquely holistic and family centric. Dan now works full time running GFHC.