When you have a loved one who is diagnosed with progressive supranuclear palsy (also referred to as PSP), you may feel confused and uncertain of what to do. After all, most people go through their lives well into their 30s or 40s before they become noticeably symptomatic and get diagnosed with PSP. While the situation may be surprising, there are neurological services and treatment options as well as supportive therapies that can help your loved one treat and manage their condition. Get to know more about a few of these options so that you can be sure that you help your loved one get the care and support they need.
While progressive supranuclear palsy does not usually respond to prescription medications in the long-term, they do work in some cases. Parkinson's disease medications can sometimes have minor effects upon the symptoms of PSP like the balance issues or even stiffness that are associated with this disorder.
Sometimes, antidrepressants can help with the effects that this neurological disorder has on the brain as well. They can also, of course, assist with the mood problems that can come along with the changes and struggles that balance and motor function issues can bring with them.
Physical and Occupational Therapy
Because current prescription medication treatments are only marginally effective in the treatment of PSP symptoms, other supportive treatments may be necessary to keep your loved one as mobile and self-sufficient as possible while dealing with PSP. The good news is that people with PSP can live with the disorder for decades if it is well-managed, and treatment options like physical and occupational therapy can help with that.
PSP has an effect on walking and overall balance as well as the movements of the eye. All of these issues can be helped with physical and occupational therapy techniques. Physical therapy can help keep the muscles moving and keep your loved one's body as active and mobile as possible. These sessions can also help your loved one adjust to using devices to assist them with balance and walking like specialized canes and walkers. Even exercises for the eyes can be determined and practiced in physical therapy.
Occupational therapy, on the other hand, can help your loved one with PSP deal with the tasks of daily living. If their balance and ability to walk are a problem, it can be difficult to get dressed or to navigate stairs, their home, or even take a shower or use the restroom. An occupational therapist can help them develop and maintain coping skills for accomplishing those tasks with little to no assistance for as long as possible.
Now that you know a few ways that your loved one can treat and manage their progressive supranuclear palsy, you can help them get the support and care that they need for their neurological disorder.
For a neurologist, contact a doctor such as Mohsen M. Hamza, M.D.