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Epilepsy and Seizures

Prevention and First AidTelling Your Friends About Epilepsy, First Aid For Seizures

It is important to know as much about your epilepsy as possible. Make sure you know what type of seizures you have and whether they are caused by anything in particular. Things that may cause you to have a seizure are called triggers. There are many types of triggers.

One common trigger is forgetting to take antiseizure medication. It can be hard to remember to take your medication at the same time every day. Some medications have unpleasant side effects that can make you reluctant to take them. If this happens, don't skip your medication—keep taking it until you can talk to your doctor about how to get rid of the side effects. Teens often think that if they have not had a seizure recently, they no longer need their medication. Remember, though, that the medication controls the seizures and that it is not safe to suddenly stop taking your medication. Other triggers may include:

  • Lack of sleep
  • Stress
  • Flashing lights such as strobe lights
  • Extreme hot or cold
  • Certain video games
  • Substances such as alcohol and caffeine

Sleep is essential for everyone, but when a person with epilepsy does not get enough sleep, a seizure often results. Good eating habits are also important for everyone, but when a person with epilepsy skips meals, the drop in the body's blood sugar can trigger a seizure. In general, a healthy lifestyle can help to keep you seizure-free. Teenagers are old enough to be responsible for taking their medication, getting enough sleep, and eating properly. Sharing this information with your friends will help them understand your needs.

Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaEpilepsy