Everyone should know what to do when they see someone having an epileptic seizure.
Epileptic seizures can be divided into two main types: focal seizures and generalised seizures. Seizures can vary from one person to another and how people are affected and how they recover after seizures varies. How you can best help someone during a seizure depends on what type of seizure they have and how it affects them.
Our step-by-step guide to the recovery position shows you how to help someone recover after a tonic clonic seizure. These steps should be followed once the shaking has stopped.
How you can best help someone during a seizure depends on what type of seizure they have and how it affects them. On this page you'll find information on what the different types of seizures are and how to treat them.
Although most people do not hurt themselves during a seizure, sometimes seizures can cause injuries.
Although seizures can be frightening to see, they are not usually a medical emergency. Usually, once the seizure stops, the person recovers and their breathing goes back to normal.
Everyone is individual and people react in different ways to their seizures and in how they recover. Some people cannot remember what happened to them during a seizure, some like to be talked to during their seizures and as they recover, and some need to sleep afterwards.
You may be able to help someone with epilepsy if you know about their seizures. Here are some questions to help you.
A person's seizures usually last the same length of time each time they happen and stop by themselves. However, sometimes seizures do not stop or one seizure follows another without the person recovering in between. If this goes on for 5 minutes or more it is called status epilepticus or ‘status’.
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Information updated: December 2021