Drooling: A Common Symptom of Parkinson’s Disease
Drooling is a Common Symptom for Adults with Parkinson’s Disease
Drooling is a common, symptom of Parkinson’s Disease. This symptom can also be frustrating. Parkinson’s Disease can affect areas of the brain responsible for swallowing. A person with Parkinson’s may also experience a reduction in previously automatic actions, like swallowing saliva. So, drooling with PD is not due to increased saliva production. Instead, drooling is often due to a change in muscle coordination and movement of the muscles used for swallowing, and even just forgetting to swallow, because of the ways that Parkinson’s Disease affects the brain.
What Can Be Done to Stop Drooling?
There are ways to decrease the symptom of drooling for individuals with Parkinson’s Disease. If you have concerns about drooling start by talking with your doctor. Adjustments can sometimes be made to your PD medications to improve swallowing. There are also medical treatments to decrease drooling, including oral medications and drops. Try sucking on hard candy or chewing gum, because this can trigger the swallowing reflex, and help with the management of saliva. If you’re concerned about drooling in public, you could try wearing a sweatband around your wrist. You could also keep a handkerchief in your pocket to keep your saliva at bay.
Can Speech Therapists Help with Drooling?
Speech therapists have specialized training to evaluate and treat swallowing disorders. If your doctor recommends a swallowing evaluation, a speech therapist can assess your swallow to recommend an appropriate treatment plan. Treatment recommendations can include avoiding certain foods or textures, and exercises to improve swallowing coordination and strength. The LSVT LOUD® treatment program, originally designed to treat speech and voice changes in individuals with PD, has been shown to also improve swallowing function. At Adult Speech Therapy Services, we specialize in treating adults with brain-related speech, language, cognitive and swallowing difficulties. We are also certified to provide the LSVT LOUD® treatment program.
What is Speech Therapy For Swallowing Disorders Like?
First, we start by getting to know our clients’ individual goals for treatment. We find out what you want to achieve. Next, we evaluate our client to find out what skills therapy should address. After completing an evaluation, we create a treatment plan unique to each client. The treatment plan consists of research-based exercises, compensatory strategies, and a comprehensive home practice program. Finally, we encourage the participation of family members and caregivers during treatment sessions, as their support is integral to our client’s success.
How Do I Seek Therapy?
Call us at 301-323-8486 today to schedule a free consultation, and take the first step to addressing your swallowing disorder, speech concerns, or cognitive changes associated with Parkinson’s Disease. Do you have Medicare and Medicaid? No problem! We accept both, as well as other insurances for which we are an out-of-network provider. Call us at 301-323-8486 today to schedule a free consultation.