Rolling Over in Bed


In last week’s edition of the Parkinson’s Newsletter from Dartmouth-Hitchcock (click here to subscribe) there was a piece on rolling over in bed because there are so many good suggestions. We have permission from editor Diane Sherman to reprint for you.

Rolling Over in Bed
People with Parkinson’s typically have difficulty getting a good night’s sleep for a variety of reasons, including being unable to roll over in bed. If you are having this problem, please talk with your doctor to ensure that you have sufficient night-time PD medication to allow you to move in bed. You might also ask your doctor for a referral to a physical therapist or occupational therapist who can help you by

  • breaking this complex movement down into steps, and
  • providing exercises to strengthen the muscles needed to accomplish these tasks.

Exercises to improve bed mobility

Helpful videos:

You might consider adding in mobility aids (available from many suppliers, including those at links below):

Video demonstration of Friendly Beds Independent Living Modular Bed Rail System. (Friendly Beds won the Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging‘s 2016 Innovation in Caregiving Award.)

Some news on the science of rolling over from Physics Central: What Rolling Over in Your Sleep Can Say about Your Health. The article cites the work of a team of Japanese physicists studying “turnover dynamics” in healthy controls and people with PD.

“The researchers proposed that healthy people roll over in two distinct ways, which they call “modes” – a quick mode that consists of rolling every ten seconds or less (not necessarily rolling over entirely, but shifting a bit, with at least a slight rotation), and a slow mode that happens every hundred seconds or more.”

The quick mode of rollover didn’t change much in PD, but the slow mode decreased with increasing severity of PD, as illustrated in the dramatic figures in the research paper.

“Analysis of the data suggests a close association among individuals’ neurological conditions, sleep quality, and statistical properties of the turnover dynamics.”

UVA Pancakes for Parkinson'sPancakes for Parkinson’s
At our Cafe Fairfax last week, we heard the story about Pancakes for Parkinson’s at UVA. Click here for the link to the article that I promised to send – A Flippin’ Awesome History of UVA’s Wildly Successful Pancakes for Parkinson’s.

Also in Charlottesville . . .

Run While You Can
Saturday, November 3, 4:00 pm

at Vinegar Hill Music Theatre, Charlottesville

One of the films featured at the 31st Virginia Film Festival ( may be of particular interest to the Parkinson community.

In 2011, Sam Fox embarked on an unbelievable challenge: to run along the Pacific Crest Trail from Canada to Mexico at record-breaking speed. In order to complete the 2,650-mile journey and break the world record, he must finish in 60 days, running at an unbelievable pace of 44 miles a day. Emboldened by his mother’s ongoing struggle with Parkinson’s disease, Fox runs both to raise awareness for the illness and to express gratitude for his mother’s strength. Along the trail, Fox pushes both his mind and body to dramatic limits in an extraordinary display of empathy for the bodily challenges his mother faces each day. Discussion with director Marion Mauran, moderated by Mark Lorenzoni (Ragged Mountain Running & Walking Shop)

Davis Phinney launches it’s first official season of The Parkinson’s Podcast
There are quite a variety of topics such as The Neuroscience of Parkinson’s and Advice for the Newly Diagnosed to help you live well with Parkinson’s. Episode 104, uploaded just this week, has Advice for Parkinson’s Care Partners with Connie Carpenter Phinney – click here.
You can either listen to them directly from the episode page on their website, or you can go to iTunes or SoundCloud or wherever you listen to podcasts and listen from there. If you’ve never listened to a podcast before and aren’t sure how to do it, this article gives a great step-by-step tutorial.

Health Support
Bob shared this information with us at a recent cafe. Thank you, Bob!
“Accordant is a CVS Caremark Company that provides support and in a way tacks your progress for certain diseases, e.g., Parkinson.  They identified me through my prescriptions and neurologist I believe. I went through a on-line history where I identified doctors and answered general health programs.  They call me about once a month for details from the previous quarter, and also provide reminders for items such as flu shots.  They can also find local resources for assistance and support.  They also can provide supporting and educational publications similar to Parkinson network.”

Accordant Health Services
4900 Koger Boulevard, Suite 100, Greensboro, NC 27407

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