How To Care for Someone with Epilepsy

The human brain is like a machine. It has a complex signaling system that has to work perfectly or you will experience some abnormalities in your nervous system and coordination. When the pulse surges rapidly for as much as 500 pulses per second, it can trigger an epileptic seizure. Epilepsy is often irreversible and if you know someone who has frequent repetitive seizures, you should have him diagnosed for the condition. There are some things that you can do to help you manage his condition:

  • Don't hide this condition. It is important that his or your family, friends and office colleagues know about his condition. Epilepsy is not embarrassing and education about this abnormality can help you take care of the epileptic person. He can't, after all, move controllably when he is under attack. He will need some help from you in this area. There are three key points for you to remember in caring for a person with epilepsy. When you have proper knowledge about this condition, you will know how to handle it. You should always:
    • Know when he is having an attack. Most epileptic attacks have patterns. Keep a log on how frequent they are and anticipate an attack.
    • Know what to do in the event of a seizure. Do not stick a spoon or any hard objects into his mouth during the attack. Contrary to the old method that during a seizure it keeps the epileptic person from biting off his tongue, putting in a hard object may do so. As much as possible, lay him on his side to prevent him from biting it. Make sure the person is breathing, if he isn't, administer CPR.
    • Know who to call in case he is unresponsive after a seizure. 911 is the first number you should call to have an ambulance respond quickly. Then you should call his doctor to inform him about the situation. Lastly, call his family or friends. Family or friends usually panic at these kinds of situations and it won't be helpful to have a room full of screaming and panicking people.
  • Be aware of his restrictions. Even though you can anticipate an epileptic attack, you may never know if it suddenly changes its pattern. Driving is one activity that requires full attention. Do not let the epileptic person drive alone or let him drive long distances. Always have a mobile phone charged and ready with you when going out for a drive.
  • Follow his doctor's orders. Be conscientious in giving his medicines. Keep a medicine schedule to follow everyday and store his medicines in a dry place, away from children but still within your view. Observe for any side effects in his medicines and inform his doctor if there is any.
  • Safety-proof his home. Keep the floor area clear and unobstructed always. Keep the sharp utensils in a drawer instead of putting them on the counter and consider using wood utensils instead of metal. Keep electrical appliances away from any area with water. Clamp the wires and cables together and keep them hidden from view.

You can't always manage this alone. Look for local support groups or organizations that offer support - both physical and emotional. You will learn other things by talking to people who have a similar situation and you can teach them what you know as well.


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