Epilepsy Association of Utah

First Aid

The Epilepsy Association of Utah is providing this information for general first aid best practices. It is important to talk to your medical professional for information on the way in which you should manage your seizures. ALWAYS notify a medical professional about seizure incidents The Epilepsy Association of Utah is not responsible for individual actions involving information listed here.

Call for medical help when:

  • The person has a convulsive seizure lasting more than five minutes
  • The person does not resume breathing after the seizure.
    (Give mouth to mouth resuscitation.)
  • The person has one seizure after another.
  • The person is injured.
  • The person requests it.
  • There is no medical I.D. for epilepsy and the person is not known to have epilepsy.
  • The person is pregnant.

Care Instructions


For a Convulsive Seizure

(generalized tonic-clonic, grand mal)

Symptoms:

The person will lose consciousness, may fall, stiffen, and make jerking movements. Difficulty breathing may cause the person to turn pale or blueish. The person may drool or become incontinent.

Care:

  • Cushion head.
  • Remove glasses and loosen any tight neckware.
  • Turn person on side and keep airway clear.
  • Track Time.

DO NOT:

  • Put anything in mouth.
  • Panic.
  • Give oral medications during seizure.
  • Restrain.

Aftercare:

Do reassure the person. Allow to rest if necessary. Stay with the person until he or she is fully awake and reoriented.

For a non-Convulsive seizure

(complex partial)

Symptoms:

Blank staring, aimlessness, chewing motions or lip smacking; often mistaken for drunkenness, drug abuse or mental illness, unable to interact.

Care:

  • Do not restrain.
  • Stay calm and track time.
  • Redirect from hazards or remove hazards.
  • Do not agitate the person (speak calmly and don’t grab)

Aftercare:

Do stay with the person until recovered. Reassure and reorient. don’t offer food or drink until the person is fully conscious. Allow to rest if necessary.