18 Tips for Getting Dressed With Parkinson’s Disease

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by Wendy Henderson |

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Parkinson’s disease can affect a person’s ability to do everyday tasks and chores, making even the easiest things complex and frustrating. Getting dressed requires both fine and gross motor skills which may pose difficulties to those living with Parkinson’s disease, but there are ways to make getting dressed easier, according to the National Parkinson Foundation.

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  • Allow yourself plenty of time to get dressed in the morning as rushing may only increase stress and worsen Parkinson’s symptoms.
  • Gather all of the clothes needed in one go, rather than making multiple trips to the closet.
  • If possible, wait until your medications have begun to work before you attempt to get dressed.
  • A few gentle stretches may help loosen and warm up muscles, making getting dressed a little easier.
  • If one arm or leg is stiffer than the other, put the stiff one into clothing first.
  • Sit down while getting dressed, using a supportive chair with armrests.
  • Sitting on the edge of the bed to get dressed can lead to loss of balance and falling forwards.
  • A footstool will help you put on socks and shoes.
  • Fabrics such as velour, velvet or nylon tend to rub together and create friction which can hinder getting dressed.
  • Avoid tight socks which are difficult to navigate over the feet.
  • Non-skid socks are preferable to slippers as they won’t fall off your feet causing a tripping hazard.
  • Choose lightweight shoes with either Velcro or elastic shoelaces.
  • Replace awkward fasteners and buttons with Velcro or magnetic buttons for easy undoing.
  • Replace standard shoelaces for either elastic laces or lace locks.
  • Choose simple loose-fitting clothes with as few fastenings or buttons as possible.
  • Elastic waistbands are preferable to fly zippers and buttons.
  • Choose soft and stretchy fabrics for comfort.
  • Oversized coats, pullovers and sweaters are easier to put on and take off.

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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.

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