Discussion Guides

Brought to you with support from UCB

Designed to complement the sixth edition of the Every Victory Counts® manual and the Every Victory Counts Manual for Care Partners while also being useful on their own, these Parkinson’s discussion guides focus on some of the primary aspects of living well with Parkinson’s, from reframing your mindset and managing symptoms to surgical treatments, complementary therapies, exercise, and social connection. Each guide includes recommendations on ways to use it, how to facilitate group discussions, and how to ensure difficult conversations encourage and welcome many points of view. Then, each includes a guide much like a book–group guide, with questions about the topic, potential talking points, potential points of contention and disagreement, and more. Finally, each guide ends with a reflection activity and call to action for the group.

These guides are designed to be used by anyone who leads a Parkinson’s support group, care partner meetup, community group, or similar get-together. They can also be used by someone who participates in a regular (non-Parkinson’s related) book club or other social group. How you use them is up to you.

Three women in library for discussion group

The collection includes:

Quality of Life and Mindset
You have Parkinson’s. Now what? This guide will help you facilitate a group discussion about the many actions people can take, beginning today, to live well with Parkinson’s.
MOTOR SYMPTOMS
In this guide, we focus on the primary Parkinson’s motor symptoms – tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement (bradykinesia), and postural instability – strategies to manage motor symptoms, and questions related to motor symptoms that can inspire helpful conversations.
DEPRESSION, ANXIETY, AND APATHY
This guide will help you facilitate a group discussion about non-motor symptoms related to emotional health, including how therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes can help people with Parkinson’s manage and treat these symptoms.
COGNITION
Not only can Parkinson’s slow down movement, it can also slow down a person’s ability to think and process information. In this guide, we’ll offer ways to facilitate a discussion about the possible cognitive impacts of Parkinson’s and how to manage cognitive symptoms.
CONSTIPATION, HYDRATION, AND NUTRITION
Two questions we hear often from people newly diagnosed with Parkinson’s are, “How can I manage constipation?” and “What should I eat now that I’ve been diagnosed?” This guide includes questions and topics to facilitate a discussion around these common queries.
MEDICATION MANAGEMENT
Medication therapy is an important part of Parkinson’s comprehensive care. In this guide, we share ways to facilitate a conversation about the many types of Parkinson’s medications, possible side effects, ON/OFF fluctuations, levodopa-induced dyskinesia, and more.
SURGICAL THERAPIES
Surgical therapies for Parkinson’s typically are explored when Parkinson’s has progressed to the stage when the side effects of adding more medications begin to outweigh the benefits the medications provide. This guide will help you facilitate a discussion about the surgical options people with Parkinson’s have that can help them live well every day.
COMPLEMENTARY THERAPIES
Complementary therapies (which include everything from physical and occupational therapy to yoga, music, and art therapy) are intended to be used together with traditional, more medical-based approaches to manage Parkinson’s symptoms. This guide will help you facilitate a discussion about the surgical options people with Parkinson’s have that can help them live well every day.
RELATIONSHIPS AND COMMUNITY
Positive relationships and supportive environments play a significant role when it comes to facing adversity and building resilience. The better our relationships and connections to our community, the better our health, outlook on life, and belief in our own self-efficacy and resilience. In this guide, we share ways to facilitate conversations about changing relationships, social connectedness, and more.
EXERCISE
In the last decade, research studies and clinical experience have upgraded the importance of exercise to treat people with Parkinson’s from a “nice to have” activity to an essential way to help manage symptoms and maintain quality of life. This guide will help you facilitate a group discussion about all the ways exercise is medicine for people with Parkinson’s.
EMOTIONAL HEALTH
Parkinson’s impacts your whole self. Therefore, attending to your emotional health is just as important as taking care of your physical and mental health. In this guide, we’ll share ways to facilitate a discussion about staying present, viewing obstacles as opportunities, asking for help when it’s needed, giving back, and building self-care and compassion into your daily life.
Care Partners Discussion Guide: What Does It Mean to Be a Care Partner?
Whether you are the spouse, partner, child, parent, sibling, or friend of your person with Parkinson’s, you are an invaluable part of their team. In this guide, we'll help you lead a conversation about what it means to be a Parkinson's care partner.
Care Partners Discussion Guide: Care Partners after a Parkinson’s Diagnosis
Learning about common Parkinson's symptoms, along with strategies to manage them and actions your person with Parkinson’s can take to live well every day, will help both of you. In this guide, we'll help you lead a conversation about steps to take as a care partner after a loved one's Parkinson's diagnosis.
Care Partners Discussion Guide: Managing the Complications of Parkinson’s
The role of a Parkinson's care partner is complex, demanding, challenging, rewarding, and ever-changing. In this guide, we'll help you lead a discussion about helping manage common Parkinson's complications so care partners and their loved ones can live well.

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