If you are concerned about rigidity please see your GP, specialist or Parkinson's nurse.
How can rigidity affect people with Parkinson's?
Rigidity can stop muscles from stretching and relaxing. It can cause:
I tend to get muscle cramps and rigidity worse in the morning. And when I wake up my movements are very limited.
- stiff muscles
- inflexible muscles
- pain and muscle cramps
- a fixed, 'mask-like' facial expression
Someone with rigidity may not be able to swing their arms when they walk because their muscles are too tight and stiff.
Some people with Parkinson's have problems turning around, getting out of chairs and turning over in bed.
Rigidity can also make it hard to do things like writing or doing up buttons.
What can help with rigidity?
- Regular exercise can help to strengthen muscles and improve flexibility and mobility.
- Our Keeping Moving exercise booklet and DVD provides exercise instructions that are helpful for people with Parkinson's.
- Physiotherapy may help with muscle cramps.
- Speech and language therapy may help with exercises to keep facial muscles flexible. Seeing a therapist soon after diagnosis may make treatment more effective.
What treatment is available for rigidity?
Parkinson's drugs may help with rigidity. See our drug treatments for Parkinson's information to find out more about how Parkinson's is treated.