How Your Smartphone Can Help You Manage Parkinson’s

Mary Beth Skylis avatar

by Mary Beth Skylis |

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My dad was a firm believer in his flip phone and knew it would survive if he dropped it from a considerable height. He counted on it to connect him with his real estate clients and get the job done.

After his diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, my siblings and I realized that voice tools might address his difficulties with texting. Eventually, his cellphone company convinced him to switch to a smartphone. 

My dad has since realized that smartphones can simplify many tasks. He can text his children by speaking into his phone and can ask Google about the weather without navigating the keyboard. Switching to a smartphone opened up new avenues of communication and made it easier for him to access information.

Siri and Google provide convenient ways to perform basic tasks, but resources exist that could further simplify your life. For example, you can track your medications, play cognitive games, and target speech and language skills via various mobile apps. It might even be possible to detect early Parkinson’s symptoms by utilizing certain technology. We’re still discovering new ways to manage Parkinson’s symptoms with technology.

Tracking medications

Mobile apps such as CareZone and Pill Reminder are free ways to track your medication dosage and timing. You can set up reminders that will ping your phone when it’s time to take another pill. Tracking medications in this way could offer a visual representation of your medication journey and depict the speed at which you’re adjusting your dosage. 

Targeting speech and language skills

Apps such as Beats Medical Parkinsons Treat can slow the progression of speech and language symptoms. You also can track your medications with this app. It offers tutorials for mobility, speech, and dexterity, giving you a way to fight Parkinson’s symptoms. 

Improving cognitive function

Puzzles that target cognitive function are a great way to stay sharp late in life. For example, Peak Brain Training features games intended to sharpen memory and vocabulary. You can track your progress over time to monitor changes in brain function. 

Easing anxiety

Regular meditation practice is associated with increased cortical thickness. Apps such as Calm and Headspace offer a way to engage with different meditative practices to ease anxiety and depression. 

Apps designed for Parkinson’s

Some apps are designed specifically for people with Parkinson’s. The Parkinson mPower study app measures tremors, gait, and balance, while Parkinson Home Exercises offers home exercises and movement advice. Learning to interact with these and similar apps can help you combat symptoms of Parkinson’s such as muscle stiffness. 

Living in the era of technology has its perks. Information travels more quickly than ever before, allowing for a global exchange of information. Competition is driving technological progress to an all-time high. Parkinson’s can be difficult to navigate, but different smartphone functions and apps could simplify your life. 


Note: Parkinson’s News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Parkinson’s News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to Parkinson’s disease.


Patty Houston avatar

Patty Houston

My brother has Parkinson's and I am trying to assist him with anything that would help make life easier.

Kaitlan Challis avatar

Kaitlan Challis

Is there a best phone to buy for someone who is an older person with Parkinsons.

Mary Beth Skylis avatar

Mary Beth Skylis

Kiatlan, I'm no expert. But my Dad has benefited from having a basic smart phone because he can use speech to text and additional features.


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