Our Helpline & Information Officer, Stuart Macgee looks at ways you can stay safe whilst living with epilepsy and still be able to do the things you love and have independence.
It is always important for anyone living with epilepsy to get into the routine of considering their safety. This can involve taking some time to think about the implications of having a seizure in a certain environment.
Consider if there are any actions to take, which will help to prevent you having a seizure or help if a seizure occurs.
Take time to think about the actions related to the tasks we complete on a regular basis. These include bathing, cooking and hobbies such as sports and leisure.
Depending on the type of seizures you experience and whether or not your live on your own, then it is usually safer to have a shower rather than a bath. Take into consideration the layout of the bathroom and access to your shower.
Ask yourself what could happen if you had a seizure and if there is anything that could be used to make it safer. This could include adding items such as a shower seat or an anti-slip mat.
If you prefer a bath, then it would be safer to only do this when there is someone else with you.
No matter the kind of seizures you experience or how regular they are, there is a higher risk of accidental drowning.
You can find more information in our safety guide.
Another area in the house where safety is a high priority is the kitchen. When cooking, depending on the frequency and type of seizures you experience, it may be safer to use a microwave than an open cooker.
If you are using an open cooker, then think about what can happen if you experience a seizure, such as burning or scalding yourself.
If someone is in the house with you then ask them to check on you and keep you company.
This doesn’t need to take away your independence but just provide some peace of mind that someone is with you if you experience a seizure.
Anyone with epilepsy should consider staying active as this can have benefits on your seizure control. It is understandable if you feel apprehensive about taking part in sporting hobbies.
Try seeking the advice of either your doctor or epilepsy specialist nurse.
This is because it is important to consider the risks of what would happen if you experience a seizure while taking part in your exercise of choice.
Ask yourself if there is any additional safety equipment or alterations you can make to protect yourself if a seizure occurs.
Once you have done this, you should be confident that you can go on to enjoy your time taking part in your hobby allowing you to socialise with friends, build confidence and hopefully improve your seizure control.
When you live with epilepsy it is important to get into a routine of thinking about your safety.
This can feel difficult after being diagnosed as you start to practice various safety measures to protect yourself from a seizure depending on what activity you are completing.
Once you start to do this on a daily basis, it can become much easier and help build your confidence, which will allow you to live a full and active life.