“A single red tulip is the symbol of World Parkinson’s Day, recognized annually on April 11.

“On this day, we offer empathy and support to Albertans living with this progressive neurological disease, and their families. We also join with other Albertans to foster a greater understanding of this condition and encourage continued research, which is vital to the development of new treatments and, hopefully, a cure.

“Parkinson’s disease occurs when a person loses dopamine-producing cells. Dopamine controls movement and the disease’s most common symptoms are tremors, stiffness, slow movements and difficulty with walking and balance. A loss of dopamine can also affect mood and thinking, leading to other symptoms like depression.

“The Parkinson Association of Alberta supports Albertans living with Parkinson’s disease by providing advocacy, research funding, education and a host of other services. The Buchanan Centre in Edmonton, the first of its kind in Canada, is a wellness centre dedicated to Albertans living with Parkinson’s disease, their caregivers and their families, and improving their quality of life.

“If you or a loved one need more information or support, please contact the Parkinson’s Disease Helpline at 1-877-243-9992.”