I’ve just watched a TV program called, Trust Me I’m a Doctor, because there was one section looking at how doing a bit of ballet movement, can help people suffering with Parkinson’s Disease. Parkinson’s is a condition that comes under the umbrella of Dementia. Parkinson’s is caused by damage, or loss of brain cells, medical term is neurones and this is in a particular area of the brain. This loss, in that area, causes the signs and symptoms that is recognised as Parkinson’s.
It stated that initial research shows that doing a bit of ballet movement, helped with balance, movement and wellbeing. One person managed to stop using her walking stick. Amazing! So the outcome was, it is good, but more research is needed.
This however, raises a questions that always irritates me! Why? There is so much evidence to show that exercise and generally being active, is good for us and research shows that it is good for the brain in many ways, including, Neuroplasticity, the brains method of using other parts of the brain to compensate for damage areas. So, It makes sense to me, that if a person has problems with say, balance, then the more exercise they do that focuses on balance, the more that person’s balance should improve. Most people are well aware that exercise is good for us both physical and mental, but this link to Neuoplasticity is something will all should be aware of and do what we can to promote this. Although the TV program was about Parkinson’s, the same process is true for many other dementia sufferers when we do physically and mental activities. So, a simple and clear message is, we need to exercise our minds and bodies.
I don’t think this continuous, ‘we will have to do more research,’ is necessary. We know enough now and to be honest, researches will always want to continue their research. I would like to know what people are doing to keep themselves physically and mentally fit, has it helped with the signs and symptoms that they experienced? My belief is, if you keep active, mentally and physically, you will be able to cope better with your problems.
The last thing; They said, by doing that bit of ballet movement, helped the sufferers of Parkinson’s ‘manage their condition.’ I would like to know what they meant by, ‘Manage?’ If the activity helps, or stops the signs and symptoms, then is it just management? What do they say will happen if those people continue with the activity and they continue to see improvement. This is surely more than just management.
I like to look for the positive and if something obviously shows positive signs, then it should be promoted. So I would say, get active, both mentally and physically. You will feel better whatever, if you don’t, you will never know! So what have you got to loose?