It is estimated that approximately 300,000 Canadians have epilepsy and 1 to 2 per cent of the population have experienced or will at some point in their life experience an epileptic seizure. That is twice as many as people with cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis and cystic fibrosis combined. – Epilepsy Ontario
March is Epilepsy Awareness Month. Epilepsy is recognized by recurring seizures. Currently, the highest number of new cases are found in seniors and in young children. It can begin at any age.
Seizures come in many forms. We are most aware of the type that cause jerking movements and loss of consciousness. However, seizures can also be mild and very brief.
Causes or factors that can bring on seizures include:
- Stress, excitement and emotional upset
- Lack of sleep
- Menstrual cycle
- Poor diet
- Stimulants such as tea, coffee, chocolate, sugar,
- Television, videos and flashing lights
Years ago, it was believed that you should put something in the person’s mouth during a seizure. This is no longer true. Next week, we’ll look at safe first aid when someone is experiencing a seizure. Being prepared is always the key factor in any first aid situation.