Watching someone have an epileptic seizure can be horrifying and very scary.
If you have ever witnessed this event, you may not be surprised that in much older days of medicine, the event was believed to be caused by demons inhabiting the person’s body.
After all, the person does seem to lose all control. The good news is you don’t have to simply stand there and watch the epileptic seizure. You can do some things to help the person.
What not to do
Before we get to how you can help someone who is having an epileptic seizure, let’s start with what you shouldn’t do.
For example, don’t waste your time trying to stop the seizure from happening. Once you see the symptoms there is nothing you can do except riding it out with the sufferer.
You should not try to put anything in the person’s mouth during an epileptic seizure. A common myth is that the person can swallow his or her tongue but that won’t happen.
However, they can choke on medication or other foreign objects. Do not shake the person either. This will not do anything.
What to do
Although you can’t do anything to stop the epileptic seizure, you can do something to prevent further injury from occurring. Move anything hazard out of the way, including furniture, knives, hot beverages, or anything heavy.
Because the person’s head will be moving erratically during the epileptic seizure, place something soft under his or her head so it is not being banged into the hard floor. This can cause damage. Roll the person on his or her side so the breathing passages will remain clear.
After the Seizure
When the epileptic seizure ends, you should stay with the person until he or she is feeling better or until help arrives.
People who have been diagnosed with epileptic seizures do not necessarily need to go to the hospital. However, don’t hesitate to ask the person if you should call an ambulance.
Get Medical Attention
In some cases, the best thing you can do for the person having the epileptic seizure is to seek out medical help. This is true when the epileptic seizure lasts longer than five minutes, is followed immediately by a second seizure, or is occurring to a person with other serious health problems. If the person’s breathing still seems erratic after the epileptic seizure, you should contact medical help as well.