World Parkinson’s Day is a worldwide holiday dedicated to Parkinson’s disease. It aims to raise awareness about the disease and to unite efforts to help people in need of treatment. It is celebrated annually on April 11.
The history of World Parkinson’s Day begins in 1997. The initiative to establish this day was proposed by the well-known WHO organization. Parkinson’s disease is a neurological disorder resulting in tremor, restricted movement, etc. The disease is usually characteristic of older people, but in rare cases it can develop in young people. There is no cure for it yet.
The first mentions of the disease are found in ancient writings from India and China, which date back to 1000 BC. However, nothing is known about the development of medicine in the direction of this disease. A complete description was given in 1817 by James Parkinson, who also drew on pre-existing descriptions of certain problems (tremor, for example).
In the 1960s of the 20th century, it was discovered that sick people had differences in their brains compared to healthy people. Low levels of dopamine were found, as well as a gradual increase in nerve cell degeneration. Dopamine agonists were used for treatment. The best results were obtained with the drug Levodopa, which is still used today to treat Parkinson’s disease, which allows to slow down its course as much as possible.
- Studies have proven that coffee drinkers and smokers are less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease. This is probably due to the specific effects of caffeine and tobacco smoke on the brain.
- Parkinsonism is a combination of symptoms (tremor, stiffness of movements, slowness, etc.), not the disease itself. Although it is the cause in 65% of cases.
- Statistically, about 10% of patients are under the age of 40.
How to celebrate
Learn more about the causes of Parkinson’s disease. Provide financial assistance to people through charitable organizations if they need treatment for the disease.
Spread the word about the holiday on social networks. Ask users if anyone they know has the disease. How is their life and treatment going?
When is World Parkinson’s Day celebrated in 2024?
World Parkinson’s Day is observed on April 11 each year.