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First Aid for Seizures

Witnessing someone suffering a seizure can be a difficult experience for anyone, regardless of whether the seizure includes convulsions or not and trying to decide what to do can be alarming. There are several types of seizures and knowing which type is occurring can be important. Types of general seizures include:

Grand mal this type of seizure is the most well known. It is characterized by loss of consciousness and body stiffening followed by violent convulsions. After this seizure the person usually goes into a deep sleep.

Absence seizures these seizures are usually a short loss of consciousness with little symptoms. Victims of these seizures are usually children. The seizure typically occurs mid-activity with the person ceasing the activity and staring blankly. This type can occur several times a day with the person not even being aware that they are happening.

Myoclonic seizures this type of seizure consists or sporadic convulsions. People having these types of seizures have sometimes described the convulsions as being like electrical shocks.

Clonic seizures these seizures are repetitive convulsions that are often rhythmic and occur on both sides of the body.

There are several things that should be done to help prevent further injury if a person is having a seizure, these can include:

Remove any sharp or heavy objects if you can from the persons vicinity to prevent them from hitting anything during the seizure.

Loosen any clothing around the neck that may be restrictive such as buttoned shirts or neckties.

Do Not try to hold the person down as this may result in even more injury to them and even to you

Do Not put anything in the persons mouth, including any seizure medicine. Wait until the person is fully alert to administer any medication. People will not choke on their tongues so that should not be a concern

Place a push under the persons head if possible

Be sure to note how long the seizure last and what all of the symptoms were later for the doctors. If possible right it down after the seizure has ended so you won’t forget.

Stay with the person even after the seizure has ended because they may be confused and scared

If the person has epilepsy or this is not their first seizure there may be no need to contact the doctor however there are several times when that is definitely a must, including:

If it is the persons first seizure

If they are pregnant

If they are hurt during the seizure

If they have several seizures in a row

If the seizure lasts longer than five minutes

No matter what the situation the most the most important thing is to remain calm and quiet for both the person suffering the seizure and the others witnessing it.