How Does Parkinson Affect The Nervous System?

Parkinson's affects one of the most important functional parts of our body which is our nervous system. Every patient needs to understand this effect and learn how to deal with it. As we always say, within every Parkinson's stage lies a new hope.

What Is Parkinson’s?

Have you ever wondered how it feels to be trapped in a body that you cannot control? Wanting to talk but you are not able to. Wanting to move but you cannot. Trying to resist all the forces that are preventing you from moving and being the master and controller of your own body. You are stuck in a body you are not able to escape from, a body that is controlled and manipulated by medications. All of the aforementioned issues happen to be the case for Parkinson’s patients. Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a progressive disorder, which targets the nervous system that is responsible for body movement in the brain. This disorder causes many symptoms such as slowness, tremors, balance problems, as well as body stiffness. All of that happens because of the death of dopamine-producing neurons. Fortunately, science and technology are putting all their effort to make the life of those patients easier. The key to making that happen is creating solutions and treatments that focus on reducing the symptoms. Thus, enabling a more active lifestyle that includes proper diet, exercise, and medication.

Parkinson’s Effect On The Nervous System And Dopamine.

Nerve cells, which are also known as neurons, work as transmitters of the nerve impulses or messages between the brain and the body. The human body is similar to an electrical circuit. A circuit that is made up of many connected wires, This connection means that a light bulb will glow whenever a switch is turned on. Neurons work the same way. The excited neuron tends to transmit its energy to the neighboring neurons around it. These messages are picked up by dendrites, which are a cell body with branching arms that neurons have. Axons tend to carry the messages away from the body of the cell. There is a gap between the axon of one cell and dendrites which allows impulses to travel from one neuron to another. The electrical impulse is allowed to cross that gap by chemical messengers called neurotransmitters. The receptors tend to release the dopamine molecules back into the synapse after the message is passed on.


The Two Types Of Parkinson’s Related To The Nervous System

Parkinson’s disease classification is related to where the disease starts in the nervous system. As such, PD is classified into two distinct subtypes. Knowing where Parkinson's starts can lead to the development of new treatments. The nervous system is divided into two parts as well, part contains the brain and spinal cord and it’s called the central nervous system (CNS). The second part, which covers everything else, is called the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Some modern studies of brain tissues that were made on PD patients suggest that right before the disease spreads by the nerves into the brain, it actually starts in the peripheral nervous system of the nose and gut. That aforementioned topic is still debatable to this day, as some do not agree with it. Researchers mainly focus on one Parkinson’s symptom which is called sleep behavior disorder (RBD) and it’s characterized by acting out dreams during sleep besides violent and uncontrolled leg movement. This may occur at an early stage because sleep behavior disorder is related to Parkinson’s that originate in the peripheral nervous system.

There are different treatment strategies for PD according to its type. Sometimes those strategies do not work when it comes to treating and preventing the brain-first type. As a result, identifying the subtypes of PD in the individual patient and personalizing treatment strategies will be required.

Autonomic Nervous System And Parkinson’s

The autonomic nervous system (ANS) is the part of the peripheral nervous system which controls the conscious actions within the body.
ANS controls many functions of the organs so it has an effect on:
  1. Breathing.
  2. Body temperature.
  3. Digestion.
  4. Blood pressure.
  5. Heart rate.

Autonomic dysfunction is often a complication of Parkinson’s because of the loss of dopamine-producing cells in addition to the existence of Lewy bodies in the brain, the microscopic protein deposits. Research shows that this peripheral nervous system could be affected before the non-motor symptoms appear. According to scientists, many medications that are used to treat Parkinson’s can have a negative effect on the autonomic nervous system, thus making the symptoms worse. Monitoring the patient’s medications is vital in such cases.


How To Keep Your Nervous System Healthy?

Although many of us take the fact that our nervous system is working properly for granted, it is so important to keep it healthy. Some symptoms that can be affected by the nervous systems would be: fatigue decreased mental acuity and irritability.


Here are some important recommendations:

  1. You should always monitor your eating routine to maintain the glucose neurons use for energy.
  2. Make sure to keep up a balanced diet with some healthy fats. Your diet should include good levels of B-12 and D vitamins.
  3. Avoid drinking excessive alcohol as well as smoking.
  4. Maintain a solid sleep schedule (7 to 8 hours of sleep every night).
  5. Keep your brain active through playing mind games and writing by hand.
  6. Always try to maintain a healthy weight.
  7. Avoid chronic stress activities that require repetitive motion.
  8. Make sure to adjust your spine regularly by a chiropractor.




As I previously mentioned, science and technology are putting all their effort to make the life of Parkinson’s patients easier. Tremor is one of the major symptoms of Parkinson’s. A very effective solution for Parkinson’s patients would be a glove gadget called Steadi-Two. This glove is used to assist in controlling a person’s hand tremors. Steadi-Two’s delicate design allows the person to have more control of their handshakes and enables him/her to practice normal daily tasks. These tasks include picking up a glass of water, drinking coffee, as well as writing on paper! The Steadi-Two, which is made by Steadiwear, is a great solution for hand tremors that affect Parkinson’s patients.





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