8 Tips for Epilepsy Caregivers

View as:|
1 of 8

Clear things away

If the person you are caring for has a seizure, it’s important to clear everything out of the way so they don’t hurt themselves. Seizures can involve falling, shaking and stiffness in the body.


Don’t hold the person down

Do not try to hold down the person having the seizure or try to stop the jerking movements that can occur. Seizures typically only lasts a minute or two.


Put something under their head

Use something flat and soft to put under the person’s head as they have a seizure. This can prevent them from hurting themselves.


Make sure nothing is tight around the neck

Make sure there is nothing tight around the person's neck, such as a necktie or necklace. This allows the person to breathe without obstruction.


Turn the person on one side

Gently turning the person on their side can open their airway and prevent them from choking.


Don’t try to put something in their mouth

Don’t try to open their mouth or put anything in it during a seizure. Also, do not try to give him or her anything to drink. It is a myth that a person having a seizure can swallow his or her tongue.


Check the time

Look at your watch once the person starts to have a seizure. If it lasts for more than five minutes, call 911.


Comfort them as they wake up

Reassure and comfort the person as they start to wake up after the seizure. Some people, including children, can be confused and cranky for a while afterwards.