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Олена Зеленська

How to administer first aid to a person going through an elliptical seizure

01.03.2022

Epilepsy is one of the most common chronic neurological diseases. It is not contagious, but in order to help the person who is going through a seizure, it is enough to follow a simple algorithm:

  • place the person in a safe and comfortable place, record the time of the start of the seizure
  • make sure that the person does not injure himself during the seizure, put something soft under their head
  • turn the person on their side to prevent saliva or blood from entering the airways
  • Important: do not try to shove any objects into a person’s mouth so that they don’t suddenly “swallow their tongue” (this is physically impossible). By doing so you can cause a lot of damage: hard objects can injure, damage teeth and gums, and sometimes even risk breaking a person’s jaw
  • during and after the seizure a person needs help – often not so much professional medical care as emotional. It is important to be close and provide psychological support
  • do not try to stop the seizure – it must pass by itself

In most cases, you do not need to call a doctor in case of an attack, but be sure to call 103 if:

  • the seizure lasts five minutes or longer
  • seizures recur one after another, and the person does not regain consciousness between them
  • this is the seizure the person is experiencing
  • the person was injured while having a seizure (for example, if they fell, or were wounded by a subject nearby)
  • the person is pregnant or has diabetes

Important: A seizure isn’t always accompanied by convulsions. Sometimes it may manifest as a short period of memory loss.

Knowing how to recognize a seizure and provide help is especially relevant now, when due to warthe number of situations that can trigger an epileptic seizure has increased. These are, for example, sudden and loud sounds, bright and flashing lights, stress and so on.

* Based on information provided by the Ministry of Healthcare of Ukraine, the Center for Public Health of the Ministry of Healthcare of Ukraine

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