POSTING FOR DISCUSSION PURPOSES AUTHOR HAS ALREADY BEEN NOTIFIED ABOUT MISINFORMATION – EpilepsyU found this article on Viper Vibe. We wanted to share it and see what you think about this young woman’s perspective. Although she did not have a lot of knowledge of seizures or how to take care of someone who is suffering one, we applaud her for trying to help her younger cousin. Note that there is some mis-information in this article. We provide an explanation at the bottom of the article and have contacted the author to encourage her to change her statedments.
Seizures are symptoms of epilepsy, but they can also be symptoms of many other terrifying diseases. They are episodes of disturbed brain activity that cause changes in attention or behavior.
In the United States, about 2.5 million people have epilepsy and nine percent of Americans will have at least one seizure during their lives.
My 14-year-old cousin, Lauren Melendez, had a terrifying seizure. Unfortunately, I witnessed this spine-chilling event with my own eyes. To have to see my own cousin go through something traumatic like that killed me.
It all started in church; Lauren turned to me and said, “Kiana, I feel dizzy.” I thought she just didn’t feel well, so I didn’t really pay much attention to it. After I started to notice she wasn’t just dizzy, I took her to the bathroom to find the problem.
A youth leader of our church came in and sat with her in the corner of the restroom while I went to fetch her a glass of water. When I returned, she refused to drink it.
Then I thought to myself, “She needs something sweet,” so I left once more to get her some soda. I went to give her the glass, and she still wouldn’t drink it. She wouldn’t respond to my questions or actions. I kept repeating, “Lauren do you understand me? Do you hear me? Please speak!” I was shaking from how scared I was.
After a few minutes she finally responded with a nod and then went back to her earlier state. I then proceeded to put a lollipop in her mouth since she did not want to drink the soda.
Another youth leader left to tell her mom about what was going on while this was happening. Waiting outside with the car, I picked Lauren up and guided her to the bathroom door. She fell on top of me because she lost the use of her legs. My friend Andre was outside the bathroom door and helped me pick her up and place her on the ground.
Lauren started having a seizure. Two men whom were youth leaders carried her to the office and placed her on the couch. She grabbed my hand and stared at me blankly in fear, shaking my hand uncontrollably. I had a disgusting feeling in my stomach knowing I couldn’t do anything but be there for her.
After a while, the paramedics came, and Lauren’s expression completely changed. I looked at her and told her, “Lauren I’m right here, but I have to let go of your hand.” She clenched my hand tighter and tighter. The paramedics had to take her hand away from mine.
At that moment, I broke down crying hysterically. I walked out the room and Andre saw me sobbing and looked at Lauren and began to cry too. I felt terrible leaving Lauren by herself.
The paramedics checked her blood sugar realizing it was extremely low, 55 to be precise, and then gave her a solid meal.
She started to come back to reality and didn’t remember anything that had happened. It hurts to see my cousin in that state. This was her ninth seizure in two weeks.
This experience has changed my life in many ways. This experience relates to a young man here at the school. He was sitting in lunch and had a seizure in front of many people. They had to airlift him from the school.
Many people all over the world have seizures and they can be mild or intense.
What if this happens to one of your friends; do you know what to do? The most important thing to do is to take a spoon or even a wallet and put it in their mouth. The reason being is that they can bite their tongue off and swallow it.*
Also, turn them on their side and put a pillow or a book bag under their head so they don’t bang it on the concrete.
My cousin Lauren is still suffering from seizures.
Seizures can be many different things, so sufferers should go to the doctor and look at past family medical history just to be safe.
Original article: http://my.hsj.org/Schools/Newspaper/tabid/100/view/frontpage/schoolid/72/articleid/484574/newspaperid/48/Encounter_with_epileptic_episode_changes_perspective.aspx
*NOTE: To clear up what the author has written – Do not ever stick anything in someone’s mouth. A spoon or other hard object can fracture teeth and cause other gum and mouth injuries. A large object such as a wallet can cause asphyxiation. One can not bite off their tongue and swallow it. These are the myths that EpilepsyU was set up to debunk and educate the public. We are constantly scouring the internet for articles with misinformation like this so that it can be corrected. Misinformation like this, even with a good intent, can cause serious damage in the hands of the wrong person at the wrong time.