Every person suffering from epilepsy should be aware of the risks associated with this neurological disorder and try to minimize them. What is risky for someone mainly depends on the type of epilepsy and the symptoms patients have but once the diagnosis is confirmed consult your doctor about lifestyle changes and potential risks.
Epilepsy May Cause Injuries
Epileptic seizures can harm you in certain situations. Many epileptic patients, especially people suffering from complex partial seizures or tonic-clonic seizures, injure or burn themselves in the kitchen or bathroom. Make sure to decrease the water temperature under 50°C (Celsius degrees) and there are very low chances to get burned. Try to adjust the indoor heating in such a way to minimize the risk of injuring yourself when having a seizure.
Besides bathing, swimming may also be problematic for someone suffering from epilepsy. These patients are advised to avoid both bathing and swimming alone, since even just running water may provoke seizures in sensitive people. Doctors advise taking anticonvulsant (antiepileptic) medications first and then taking a shower in the morning.
Driving is yet another thing that may be dangerous for epileptic patient. According to law, everyone who has epilepsy is required to report the condition and drive only after some time of being seizure-free and with medical approval.
Even though these patients may experience generalized seizures, there are very low chances that the person will experience complications such as status epilepticus, some brain damage or even death.
Are There Any Precautionary Measures?
If you or someone close to you suffers from epilepsy – check your home. Think about all the things that might be dangerous for someone having a seizure. Water temperature should be controlled to avoid burns and shower must be safe if a person falls down. Wear a helmet while riding a bicycle or motorcycle. There is always some valuable information you can get at your doctor’s office or some community agencies, so ask the doctor and check on-line.
It is important that people at work and in school know and understand your condition. Medical jewelry (bracelets) with epilepsy information are recommended by the specialist and found to be very helpful in emergency situations. However, some people do not want to wear those and they may opt to carry this information about their condition in their wallets.
Besides securing your home and workplace, there are several other things you can do. Educate yourself and learn as much as you can about your condition. Talk to your doctor, treat the condition properly and get checked regularly. Follow the therapy to the letter and if you happen to have any problems or adverse effects, report these. Identify things or situations which trigger your seizures and then avoid those. In case of emergency, give accurate information to medical emergency staff and anyone else looking after you, for that might be crucial for the treatment.