Older adults may have seizures for many different reasons, including strokes or Alzheimer’s disease.
Witnessing a seizure can be disturbing and you may wonder what to do. Unfortunately, there’s nothing you can do to make a seizure stop, but there are steps you can take to keep your aging relative safe during a seizure. Knowing how to administer first aid and when it’s time to get emergency assistance will enable you to better care for them.
First Aid Steps
There are different kinds of seizures, so the specifics of how to deal with your older family member’s seizures may vary. However, these steps will help with most kinds of seizures.
-Don’t Leave: It’s hard to predict how long a seizure will be or how bad. Stay with the person until the seizure is over. Since seizures can cause disorientation, stay with them for a while afterward to make sure they don’t injure themselves.
-Time the Seizure: Look at a clock when the seizure begins and note the time. If the seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes, call for help. Pay attention to how long it takes for the senior to recover afterward as well since this information can be important in determining changing treatment needs.
-Remain Calm: Stay calm during the seizure and speak reassuringly to the senior.
-Prevent Injury: Move any objects away from the person so they don’t injure themselves. Place a pillow under their head to cushion it from hitting the floor.
There are also some things you should not do during a seizure, such as:
- Don’t put anything in the person’s mouth. They will not swallow their tongue and putting something in their mouth could injure their jaw or teeth.
- Don’t hold them down to try to stop the movements.
- Don’t attempt CPR. People typically start breathing on their own when the seizure is over.
- Don’t give them anything to eat or drink until you are certain they are fully aware again.
When to Call the Doctor
Most of the time, there’s no need to call for medical help when someone has a seizure. Some circumstances that warrant calling 911 are:
- The senior hasn’t had a seizure before.
- They don’t come to or have trouble breathing after the seizure.
- The seizure is longer than 5 minutes.
- The person has a second seizure right after.
- An injury occurs.
- The seizure occurs in water.
- The senior has another health condition, like diabetes or heart disease.
If your aging relative has seizures, a senior care provider can help to keep them safe. Senior care providers can follow the appropriate steps to prevent injuries. Because tracking seizures can be helpful for treatment purposes, a senior care provider can also note the time and circumstances of the seizure so you can report them to the doctor.
Are you or a loved-one considering hiring Senior Care in Alexandria, VA? Please call the caring staff at Medical Professionals On Call today. Contact: 703-273-8818