Employers should know that Parkinson’s has many symptoms and no one person is same. I’m not working, and I continued to work for 1 year after my diagnosis. I felt greatly supported by my employer/co-workers. My superfund were excellent.

The most debilitating issues with regards to my working capacity were fatigue/lack of sleep, muscle stiffness/rigidity, anxiety and depression, constipation and bladder control, problem solving and memory issues. The particular time of the work day that I found more difficult than other times of the day was after lunch. Too long a day. I sleep 2/3 hours from lunch. Strategies or techniques that may have been helpful to support me to stay in the workforce longer could have included flexibility to work around fluctuating symptoms, enhanced employer understanding of the impacts of young onset Parkinson’s, a hands free phone, reduced hours and working from home. I tried return to work with reduced hours but my Dr and employer agreed and my super paid permanent disability. Very supported through the process and no pressure was ever put on me. Not sure all employers would be so good. I was a Government employee. It would depend who you worked for but I would think early disclosure would mean more support and understanding for both parties. I did seek advice about my rights as an employee. My HR officer and my claims officer for my super fund provided me with all details.