Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login

So, what exactly is epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a common neurological condition that affects about 1 person in every 200. Seizures are the result of a brief, temporary disruption to the usual activity of the brain. Reasons can include brain damage, scarring, chemical or hormonal imbalance, or tumors. There are many types of seizures – what happens before, during and after a seizure depends on which part of the brain is affected and how far the disruption spreads. Most seizures are over in a few minutes or less and the person recovers quickly. Epilepsy can affect anyone, of any age or race, either sex and from any walk of life. However, the majority of people with epilepsy respond well to treatment and can get on with their lives.

Living with epilepsy

:bulletred: Experiences of epilepsy and of having seizures vary from person to person. 
:bulletred: Some people's seizures only happen at night. 
:bulletred: Some people have seizures that are so subtle they may go unnoticed by others. 
:bulletred: Some seizures may be mistaken for other conditions, e.g. alcohol or drug related behavior. 
:bulletred: Some people's seizures follow a particular pattern; others have seizures that occur at random. 
:bulletred: Sometimes seizures can be triggered by a range of factors, e.g. lack of sleep, missed meals, response to stress or anxiety, fever, flashing lights. 
:bulletred: Most seizures are over in a few minutes or less and the person recovers quickly, but it's not unusual to feel sleepy or have a headache afterwards and sometimes it can take up to a few days to feel back to normal. 

What can you do when someone has a seizure?

It's important to know whether the person having a seizure requires urgent medical attention. This all depends on the patterns of the seizure, how long it lasts and if the person has any injures due to the seizure. 

The first and most important thing to do with any seizure is to get the person into the recovery position as shown below: 

                                        Recov. position image by akkajess
It is very important they are on their side because if they vomit, the person would choke.
After putting them into the recovery position, make sure to do the following:

:bulletred: Support the person's head (use cushions, a coat or even your hands)
:bulletred: Check airways and their breathing
:bulletred: Talk to and reassure the person having the seizure.

However, do not:

:bulletred: Put anything into their mouth, they will not swallow their tounge
:bulletred: Restrain them. Even though it can look very scary, it is important to let the seizure take it's course. Restraining could end in injury. 

Epilepsy and Photo sensitivity

Epileptic seizures can sometimes be triggered by flashing or flickering lights or certain geometric patterns. This condition is known as photosensitive epilepsy. Such seizures can only be provoked in a person who is already sensitive or susceptible to such triggers, or who already has epilepsy. Both natural and artificial light sources can trigger parts of the brain into acting abnormally, which can lead to a seizure.


Common seizure triggers for people with photosensitive epilepsy include:

:bulletred: Lights flashing at a rate of 5-30 flashes per second, including strobe lights and faulty fluorescent lights. 
:bulletred: Television, video games and computer graphics. 
:bulletred: Sunlight shining through a row of trees or reflecting off water. 
:bulletred: Strongly striped or geometric patterns. 
:bulletred: Faulty TV sets, poorly tuned TV channels.

Simple precautions to take:

:bulletred: In discos, pubs or clubs, be aware of and avoid long exposure to flashing lights
:bulletred: Take regular breaks from heat and noise. 
:bulletred: Do not become dehydrated – drink plenty of water
:bulletred: Make sure the room is well lit and place a subdued light on top of the TV to balance the brightness of the screen.
:bulletred: Take frequent regular breaks away from the screen: 5 minutes every 30 minutes if you're watching TV, and 5 minutes every 15 minutes if you're playing computer games.

If you didn't know, there are add-ons for every browser to stop animated images on the web! This can help those with photosensitive epilepsy from being triggered without warning. [Thanks to DamienMuerte!] More information on this can be found here: 

My Story

I do not have epilepsy, however, someone very close in my family has it. I'm her registered carer and have been helping her with her epilepsy even since I was old enough to understand what was going on. It really is a horrible disability and can set you back a lot sometimes. She can't get a job and even if she did, she couldn't drive there. It's a shame such a common illness is so misunderstood. Luckily, she attended a epilepsy support group which really helped with her confidence - and also made some good friends too! 

To end off, I hope I helped someone understand epilepsy and how you can help someone who has it. It's very good knowledge to know. I wish anyone with epilepsy the best of luck in life and want you to know that you are very strong. Thank you for reading, it has been a pleasure. 



Epilepsy Awareness bow by DamienMuerte          Epilepsy by TheLeavesOfMemory :iconepilepsy-awareness: :iconspreading-awareness:

Add a Comment:
kalenakeeper Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
thankyou for writing this,
akkajess Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Student Writer
You're very welcome! 
Thanks for reading :tighthug:
DamienMuerte Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you SO much for writing this!

I tried to write something similar understandable, but I created a whole mess. Your Article here points me to the things I forgot, and its so well formatted, its a joy to read!

Thank you so  much for using my bow and linking my group! 

Maybe you can add  and mention, that there are Addons for every Browser to stop animated images - something that reduces the risks for people with Photosensitive Epilepsy on the web =) 

Awesome work, thank you Again and over again =D 
akkajess Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Student Writer
Thank YOU so much for the kind words! You totally made my night 10 times better :tighthug:

I've added the information about the add ons and included a link to where you can find them :D
DamienMuerte Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you =)  We better join the fight against epilepsy ;D

Though the link doesnt work, theres something in it that wont lead you further ._.   Dont know if you made the mistake, or Deviantart has some issues *which happens often, sadly*
You can , if you want, link here, too :… =)   
akkajess Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Student Writer
Tried to re-do the formatting like 15 times but it didn't work :shakefist:
I added your link instead! Thanks again :heart:
DamienMuerte Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you very much again, used it as advice and it remembered me what I forgot to mention in my own Topic I made on =)  <3 
akkajess Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Student Writer
You're welcome! :heart:
Nichrysalis Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Another tip for photosensitive epilepsy is to hold a hand over one of your eyes to reduce the amount of light you see and process. :)
akkajess Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2013  Student Writer
Thanks! I'll add that in :D
Nichrysalis Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Nichrysalis Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I forgot to :+fav: this. Fixed! :D
Add a Comment:

:iconakkajess: More from akkajess

Featured in Collections

News and Journals by Nichrysalis

Epilepsy Faves by DrJEMnutcase

Literature by crysie

More from DeviantArt


Submitted on
July 12, 2013


8 (who?)