Make friends with epilepsy

Make friends with epilepsy

Epilepsy Centre


Make friends with epilepsy

Since the dawn of time, epilepsy has affected millions of people from beggars to kings. It’s one of the oldest conditions of the human race with a rich and distinguished history.


Epilepsy is what you have, not what you are. Epilepsy is part of your life; it’s not your whole life. You can probably live, work and function in the world just as well as anyone else. However, living with epilepsy isn’t without some bumps. Accept the limitations it may impose on you from time to time and live life to the fullest.

Help yourself

Safety is important. If you remember some basic, common sense rules, you will minimise the likelihood of injury should you have a seizure.

  • Fires and stoves. Never get too close to an open fire. Keep guards around fireplaces and primus and gas stoves
  • Bathrooms. Keep doors unlocked. Take a shower rather than a bath. If you don’t have a shower, keep your bath water shallow and turn off the taps before getting in. Avoid bathing while alone at home.
  • Sleep. As some people have seizures during their sleep, try sleeping without a pillow.
  • Sports. If you take adequate precautions, you should be able to participate in any sport. Wear a helmet when biking or horse riding and don’t go swimming, mountain climbing and sailing on your own. Make sure that whoever is with you is aware of your condition and knows what to do if you should have a seizure.
  • Identity discs. Always wear an identity disc (available from Medic Alert at 0861112979 or
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    ]]>) and have a card containing your name and your doctor’s name and contact numbers in your handbag or wallet.
  • Educate yourself, your family and friends about epilepsy.
  • Find a doctor in whom you have confidence and follow his or her advice.
  • Be open with others and try to ignore any negative reactions.
  • Don’t let the fear of having a seizure keep you at home.
  • Remember that with the right approach, qualifications and skills, epilepsy need not be a major barrier to employment.
  • Consider buying a dog that is trained to retrieve a phone prior to your having a seizure, summon help in a controlled environment and stay with you during a seizure. A dog is also a faithful and fun companion. To find out more about seizure response dogs go to http://www.epilepsy.com/get-help/staying-safe/seizure-dogs and www.sadogtraining.co.za.

Help from others

Help is available through:

  • Your doctor
  • Clinic
  • Epilepsy South Africa. Call 0860 374537 or go to http://www.epilepsy.org.za/contact/index.php.

Sources
www.epilepsy.org.za
www.epilepsyfoundation.org

Revised by M Collins

2018-04-26T08:18:02+00:00