Once you get diagnosed with epilepsy, your doctor will give you all the information about the illness and the seizures that indicate it. Although these seizures can be tied to various brain injuries or genetics, more often than not there isn’t a known cause for them. The seizures can differ from one person to another, and it can even happen that the same person has several types of seizures. These seizures can have a huge impact on a person’s life. Their safety may be compromised, their relationships put to a test, and they could face challenges when it comes to work, driving and many other aspects of everyday life. Another problem is how people around you perceive your disorder and its treatment, which can either make things easier on you, or make them much harder. However, there are always some things you can do to make the situation more acceptable and live the best life you can. Here are some of them.
Maintaining your mental health
When diagnosed with epilepsy, many people start feeling furious, helpless or simply sad. If you want to lead a fulfilling life despite your condition, you have to tend to your mental health first. Fortunately, there are steps you can take towards accepting your illness and getting your life back on track. The first one is to learn as much as you can about epilepsy, so that you know what causes it and what the available treatments are, as well as to disregard any unsupported myths about it. Perhaps you could even benefit from keeping a journal, since putting your feelings and thoughts on paper could help you deal with them more easily. Other than that, you should make sure your doctor and you are on the same page, meaning that if they don’t understand the emotional turmoil your diagnosis has led to, you should consider finding a new one who will. You’ll be seeing them often and they should offer you understanding and support beyond the treatment they prescribe you. Finally, if your MD can’t help with your mental state, look for a therapist, psychologist or a psychiatrist who can.
Take your medications on schedule
In most cases, your MD will give you medications to help you control your seizures. However, nearly a third of epilepsy patients are affected by the treatment-resilient form of the illness, and in those cases the medications may not be of any use. In those cases, it may be a good idea to try premium medical marijuana concentrates to suppress your seizures. On the other hand, if your medications are doing their job, it’s essential you never skip the prescribed dose, since that can lead to seizures you can’t control at all. If the medications you’ve been given cause some troublesome side effects, talk to your MD and ask if they can change them. In order to maintain continuance in taking these medications, it might be of assistance to get a pill organizer for an entire week, as well as to download an app on your phone to keep track of everything. If you’re worried you’ll forget to take your medications, set an alarm on your phone or watch, and always get your refills on time.
Be prepared for seizures
Being ready for a seizure doesn’t involve just you, but also the people closest to you, whether at home or at work. By making a seizure response plan, you’ll make it easier on the people around you, since they’ll know exactly how to treat you and at which point to call for help in case of an emergency. Also, if you live alone, you might want to invest in a medical alert bracelet for outdoor seizures, or get an alarm device to call help if you have a seizure inside your home. Furthermore, you should inform your neighbors of your diagnosis, so that they pay a bit more attention to things like closed curtains in the middle of the day, or the fact that they didn’t see or hear you leave your home at the regular time, since that might mean you’re hurt and need assistance. Also, you should know what your usual triggers are, so that you avoid them and lower the chance of a seizure. Last, but not least, if you live alone, you might want to make certain changes to your living space, so that you decrease the risk of hurting yourself physically during seizures. Grab bars and non-slip mats in your bathroom, as well as a shower chair when you’re taking a shower could make all the difference in the world when you get a seizure.
With certain lifestyle and living-space changes, you can manage your condition better and have it affect your everyday life less. Although it may not seem easy at first, once you get a hang of it, you’ll still be able to love your life and live it the way you want to.