What is Parkinson’s disease?

An ailment which effects more and more people around the world today, is Parkinson’s disease. You may have heard of this illness which has effect on motor functions and brain functions. The symptoms are caused by too little dopamine production in the brain, which causes a row of symptoms. Most commonly seen is the stereotypical Parkinson’s disease shakes, or tremors as they are called.

They can display on one or on both sides of the body, and is often detected when a person relaxes, and tremors in the hands, arms and legs occur outside of the persons control.

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The movement disorder is in most cases not in need of urgent care, however it’s progressive and can get worse over time, especially if one does not undergo treatment and therapy. Other symptoms which may be noted, are changes in the persons posture, voice and hand writing, as these are also things which are heavily connected with motor functions.

If you notice symptoms in yourself or someone that you know it’s worth ensuring that you keep a close look, to be able to see if the symptoms become worse. Even if Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative, progressive and chronic illness, there are many cases where people live without major interference of the symptoms to their day to day lives.

Should you or someone that you are in proximity with be diagnosed with the illness, it’s also important that you find the right support and treatment for you. Parkinson’s is a highly individual illness, and each case is different. There is currently no cure found for the disease, however with medical research advancing the help available becomes better and better.

A Surprising Connection

When it comes to discussing health conditions, the last thing that might come to mind is how they relate to specific professions. However, in a peculiar twist, the construction industry, particularly roofers, has a surprising connection to Parkinson’s disease. This neurodegenerative disorder, commonly associated with tremors and movement difficulties, might seem unrelated to the daily tasks of a roofer. But as we delve deeper, you’ll discover an unexpected correlation and its implications for both workers and employers.

Understanding Parkinson’s Disease

Unraveling the Neurodegenerative Enigma

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive nervous system disorder that affects movement control. It occurs when certain nerve cells, or neurons, in the brain gradually break down or die. These neurons play a crucial role in producing dopamine, a chemical responsible for smooth and coordinated muscle movements.

Unmasking the Symptoms

The symptoms of Parkinson’s disease are diverse and often develop gradually. They include tremors, rigidity, bradykinesia (slowed movements), and postural instability. These motor symptoms, while widely recognized, represent only a portion of the challenges faced by those living with the condition.

Beyond the Basics: Non-Motor Symptoms

Parkinson’s disease extends beyond physical symptoms, encompassing a range of non-motor manifestations. These can include cognitive changes, sleep disturbances, mood disorders, and even gastrointestinal issues. The complexity of the disease adds layers to its connection with unlikely professions.

The Roofer’s Reality

Scaling Heights: The Physical Demands of Roofing

Rooftop work demands physical strength, balance, and coordination. Roofers often find themselves navigating uneven surfaces, handling heavy materials, and working at heights that require constant awareness of their surroundings.

Occupational Hazards: Toxins and Tremors

Here’s where the unexpected connection comes into play. Roofers, due to their frequent exposure to certain environmental toxins, might face an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. These toxins include pesticides, herbicides, and heavy metals like copper, which can disrupt the delicate balance of dopamine in the brain.

Linking the Elements: Pesticides and Parkinson’s

Research has shown a potential link between prolonged pesticide exposure and the development of Parkinson’s disease. The chemicals in pesticides can interfere with neurological pathways, potentially triggering or exacerbating the condition, especially in individuals with a genetic predisposition.

Navigating the Implications

A Shift in Perspective

The correlation between Parkinson’s disease and roofing sheds light on the intricate interplay between environmental factors and neurological health. This connection urges us to reconsider workplace safety guidelines and advocate for more comprehensive protective measures.

Raising Awareness: Early Detection and Intervention

Recognizing the early signs of Parkinson’s disease is paramount, especially for those in vocations that might heighten the risk. Roofers, along with their employers, should be vigilant about regular health check-ups, as early intervention can significantly impact disease progression.

From Rooftops to Research: The Road Ahead

The unexpected association between roofers and Parkinson’s disease underscores the importance of ongoing research. As we strive to unravel the complexities of neurodegenerative disorders, a spotlight is cast on occupations that could potentially serve as indicators or areas for further scientific exploration.

In a world where connections between seemingly unrelated elements continue to astonish us, the link between Parkinson’s disease and roofers stands as a testament to the intricate nature of health and occupation. The journey from unraveling the mysteries of a debilitating condition to safeguarding the well-being of those who labor on rooftops is a reminder that every aspect of human life is interwoven in ways we are still striving to comprehend.


  1. Is Parkinson’s disease only caused by genetics? No, while genetics can play a role, environmental factors such as toxin exposure can also contribute to its development.
  2. Are all roofers at risk of Parkinson’s disease? Not all roofers are at the same level of risk. Those with prolonged and frequent exposure to certain toxins might have an elevated risk.
  3. Can lifestyle changes reduce the risk for roofers? Yes, adopting protective measures like using proper safety gear and minimizing toxin exposure can help reduce the risk.
  4. What are some early signs of Parkinson’s disease to watch out for? Early signs include tremors, stiffness, changes in handwriting, and difficulty with balance.
  5. How can employers support roofer’s health? Employers can prioritize workplace safety, provide regular health check-ups, and offer education about potential risks.