Writing is often very difficult for people with Parkinson’s and requires a high degree of concentration. A common problem is that the writing gets very small and thus is very difficult to read. Many affected people also experience impaired hand movements, as it was shown by Virginie Pechon in a previous video of this series. As a result, writing or taking notes becomes even more difficult.
In her video, Nicole Colson, the occupational therapist trainer from ParkinsonNet Luxembourg, gives practical advice on how to perform writing exercises to improve handwriting. “Writing is omnipresent in our lives, be it a letter, a shopping list, filling out a bank transfer or signing a document. Regular writing exercises can thus help to reduce problems with these tasks,” Nicole states.
Another important point to improve writing is to choose the right pen or pencil. “This is an individual decision and different pens might work well for different patients. If you discuss with your occupational therapist, he will give you personalised advice and will allow you to try out different writing aids.”
As a self-employed occupational therapist, Nicole visits her patients at home to do exercises, give advice and try to find out together with the patient and the caregiver how to manage daily activities in the most efficient way. As Parkinson’s disease can cause a broad variety of symptoms, it is important to develop an individual and patient-focused therapy.
The writing exercises are part of the therapeutic strategies of ParkinsonNet Luxembourg which aim to find and integrate a common direction for the multidisciplinary treatment of the patient.