Mental Health

I am 69 years old. I had a positive DATscan 9 months ago. I have Atypical Parkinson’s. I also have Peripheral Neuropathy & New Atrial Fibrillation. I have been taking Co-careldopa [Sinemet] for 2 days. In three weeks time I will be taking
11 pills a day for Parkinson’s & my other health issues.

It is all a lot to take in. I seem to be coming down with one thing after another. I live
alone with no close family or friends. I prefer being on my own as I only have myself to think about & I can do what I want.

I am very lucky in that I own my own flat & have no mortgage & I can just about manage on my state pension. But things are fairly tight & not being able to play golf [through Parkinson’s] is a Godsend as I couldn’t really afford to play. As well as the £1,600 yearly fees I had to hire a golf cart £20 a game. I now play indoor bowls costing £4 a day, much more affordable & I play 4 or 5 times a week.

Physically I struggle to play bowls & twice I have had to stop. But it is usually manageable & I get to speak to other people every day. If I did not play bowls I would not see anybody at all other than the Asda grocery delivery driver once a week.

There is help out there & I spoke to one of my GP’s who is getting me assessed for alterations to my flat. Hand rails & a new bath that I can get into & a chair I can get up from.

It is depressing that I can’t go on holiday, can’t play golf, can’t go for a walk, can’t do my own grocery shopping. But I do feel very well & of course there are a lot of people my age that are physically worse off than I am.

One thing that has been troubling me for some months has been doing my
tax return. In the past I have had an accountant but I decided that I could not afford the £375 + Vat yearly fees. So I decided I would do it myself. Every day I wake up thinking that I would start the tax return but I did not get very far … Clearly this is a mental issue for me … It was all too much for me …

About three months ago it became clear that I needed a blue badge for my car as
I can’t walk very well. So I contacted AGE UK. They were incredibly helpful & sent me the Blue Badge forms all free of charge. A bit like my Tax Return I found it very hard to do but I finally managed to get it done. There was a lot to do … letters from doctors, up to date photo, copy prescriptions etc & pages & pages of questions.

Anyway on Friday I got up, as usual telling myself that I must start my tax return that day. It was then that a lady from AGE UK phoned me. It was just a
"How was I getting on ? " phone call. “How was I managing for money ?” she asked.
I said my finances were a bit tight but I was managing ok. My car needs servicing & diesel is expensive & I had to put off dental treatment. So she said there is a thing called “attendance allowance” that I would clearly qualify for. But I said I’m not great with these processes & that I was struggling to do my tax return. So she says she will handle the attendance allowance for me & she gave me the telephone number of a charity that helps people like me with their tax returns free of charge.
So I phoned this telephone number she gave me, gave them my NIS number & they had access to all my past tax returns on their computer. I told them my only current income was my state pension. They told me that I had no need to complete a tax return & that I was due a tax refund so I can now fix my teeth & my car.

So a big shout out to AGE UK who like Parkinson’s UK do a lot for us all., free of charge.

Just thought I’d share … Not having to ever do a Tax Return again is such a weight off my mind & has helped my mental health.

Best wishes & a Happy Xmas to everyone & better health in the New Year.


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Hello Steve2
I think you should be proud that you have managed all those different things and have come out the other side with some things solved and others in hand. There will always be issues of one sort or another some of which will undoubtedly test you, that’s just how life is sometimes but I think you have proved you are stronger than you probably think you are. Take a few minutes to think about all you’ve survived - you did that. Life hasn’t beaten you yet and long may that be so.
Best wishes

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Wow Steve good on ya you’ve got through a difficult time with help from the right people. I found asking for help very difficult as I’m usually in control & independent. But I was in a new world of PD when my husband was diagnosed & we needed to except help & use the people with the knowledge to help. I will definitely ask Age Concern for help :pray:

Thanks for sharing Steve! Citizens Advice can also be really helpful. They fill out forms for you too. Imglad AGE were / are so helpful.
If you’re struggling with car payments, ask her next about applying for motability. I don’t know exactly how it works.
Love and light

Good evening E, Jane0804 & of course Tot [no I don’t want a personal trainer lol].
Thank you all for your kind comments & support.

My “Mental Health” post started out as a shout out for the good work AGE UK do & did for me & it sort of got side tracked …

It’s good that this is a place we can talk about stuff & help & support each other.

As it’s nearly Xmas, it was around this time of year that my Dad toppled over the mental health line into dementia … He lived on his own & it was time to send out that years Xmas cards which he & my deceased Mum always did together. It was only a small job, but it was just too hard for him, so many envelopes to fill out & cards to write & when he couldn’t find the stamps he’d bought that was it … I was feeling like that when trying to get around to doing my tax return. So good old AGE UK saved me a lot of grief & perhaps my sanity.

I’m sure a lot of us Parkinson’s guys & gals suffer from fatigue & tiredness. Most of us don’t sleep well & we are all on medication that has all sorts of side effects. Most fairly minor but they all add up.

I am now on Sinemet [Parkinson’s] … Ramipril [High Blood Pressure] … Amitriptyline [Peripheral Neuropathy] … Apixaban [Blood Thinner for stroke] … Bisoprolol [Beta-Blocker for A-Fib] … All have associated side effects & lifestyle issues.

Once again Happy Xmas.

Best wishes

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Dealing with health issues and financial concerns can be incredibly challenging, and it’s heartwarming to hear about the support you received.

You’ve shown incredible strength and resilience in managing all of this, and I’m glad to hear that getting rid of the tax return burden has lightened your load and helped your mental health. If you’d like more information about mental health and its benefits, you can check out this link:
It’s a reminder of the importance of seeking help and reaching out to organizations like AGE UK when we need it.

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