(WGHP) — A seizure can be scary to witness, and it can be hard to know how to help.
Sometimes, seizures are caused by epilepsy, and that’s something you can learn more about.
What is epilepsy?
- Epilepsy is a chronic condition of the brain that is characterized by repeated seizures.
- Typically, a diagnosis of epilepsy is made after someone has had at least two seizures.
- A person can be diagnosed with epilepsy after just one seizure if they have another condition increases the risk of repeat seizures
What causes it?
- There are some forms of epilepsy that are genetic and can be present at birth.
- Other forms can be secondary to problems such as brain injuries, stroke or infections.
- However, there are also cases where the cause of epilepsy is still unknown
What should I do if I see someone having a seizure?
- Remain calm and stay with them
- Keep the person safe, move away from harm if present
- Turn person on their side, loosen tight clothing
- Put something soft under their head
- Call 911 if seizure last more than 5 minutes, if they are injured, have difficulty breathing, this is a “first time” event, have repeated seizures or if the seizure happens in water
- Do NOT hold them down or put anything in their mouth
- You can learn more at this website.
How is epilepsy managed?
- There are several different medications to help with seizures and for most patients that can be effective in controlling her seizures. When the seizures are well controlled, people can live normal lives.
- If, however, the seizures are not well controlled, people need to be extra careful with any activity that could result in injury if they were to lose consciousness or awareness. This would include driving, climbing on ladders, swimming by themselves, or operating heavy machinery.
Dr. Chris Morris, a neurologist with Novant Health, spoke with FOX8 about what you need to know if a friend or loved one lives with epilepsy.