Did you know that actor Robin Williams was experiencing the early symptoms of Parkinson’s disease before he committed suicide, in 2014 at age 63?
In a 2014 statement, Williams’ widow, Susan Schneider, said that her late husband had been struggling with the early stages of Parkinson’s disease, but was not ready to share his diagnosis with the public. Susan hoped that from Robin’s tragic passing, that others will find the strength to seek the care and support they need to treat whatever battles they are facing so they may feel less afraid.
Well known Sports Broadcaster Dave Clark, who has Parkinson’s has not kept it secret that his father Alan Clark, diagnosed at age 44, had been so worried about the stigma around Parkinson’s at the time that he didn’t tell anyone and eventually took his own life.
People living with mental health problems often experience a lack of adequate support to help them make positive changes to their lives and to address the impact of living with a mental health condition.
Chief Executive of Parkinson’s Care and Support UK, Elizabeth Gordon said “People with Parkinson’s are significantly affected by mental health problems such as anxiety and depression as a direct consequence of the disease. These invisible symptoms have devastating effects on one’s quality of life. It increases isolation, breaks down relationships, impacts on mobility and of course poses risk for suicide. Emotional support and therapy are needed at the point of diagnosis. The mental burden of staying silent is a great one. Younger people with Parkinson’s Disease, are disadvantaged further as they have totally different social and economic needs including young children and careers and particularly need extra support.”
“Over the past 50 years billions of pounds has been spent worldwide on Parkinson’s Research in search of a cure, but this has not come. Parkinson’s Care and Support UK passionately believe that it is our duty to improve quality of life for everyone with Parkinson’s for as long as humanly possible.”