Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for Parkinson’s, which is the fastest growing neurological condition in the world, and one in 37 of us alive today will be diagnosed with the disease during our lifetimes.
There were 145,000 people living with a Parkinson's diagnosis in the UK in 2020, according to charity Parkinson’s UK, but with population growth and ageing, this is likely to increase by a fifth, to around 172,000 people in the UK by 2030.
These are sobering statistics, though Parkinson’s can impact people in very different ways, and with their own particular set of symptoms. These may include involuntary tremors, stiffness, balance problems, fatigue, anxiety and depression. Sadly, these symptoms usually deteriorate over time.
That said, many people diagnosed with Parkinson’s lead full and active lives for many years, and this World Parkinson’s Day aims to celebrate the challenges that those with the condition have faced head on and overcome, or found a different way around, as well as other positive moments that lift people up.
Although Parkinson’s isn’t curable, there are plenty of therapies, treatments and medications available which can help people manage the condition, including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy.
The importance of protectionNone of us knows what’s around the corner, but it’s vital to think about how you’d cope, both financially and emotionally, if you’re ever diagnosed with a serious condition such as Parkinson’s.
Any debilitating long-term illness could have a major impact on you and your family, as well as on your ability to work and to protect your home. It therefore makes sense to consider cover, such as critical illness or income protection, whilst you are in good health.
Critical illness cover, for example, is designed to provide you with a tax-free lump sum if you’re diagnosed with a serious illness. The range of illnesses covered by this type of policy has significantly expanded in recent years, and now includes Parkinson’s as well as early-stage cancers and less invasive heart procedures. If you already have cover, but took out your policy several years ago, it’s worth checking which conditions are included. If only a limited range of illnesses are covered, it may be worth reviewing your policy as you might be able to find cover for a broader range of conditions for the same price as your current policy.
Our protection advisers are available to give you expert advice, so call now on 0808 292 0555.