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#EpilepsyFutures graduate and now Peer Mentor Steven Connelly shares his 6 top tips on how to successfully self manage epilepsy, as part of Self Management Week 2018…

Managing and living with epilepsy on a daily basis can present significant challenges and also be difficult. Seizure activity can have a negative impact and influence over an individuals achievements, and potential to live life to it’s fullest.

In my opinion, strong and pro-active self management skills are absolutely essential as they help individuals take control over the day to day challenges associated with living with epilepsy.

So here are my top tips and what I’ve learned about successfully self managing epilepsy:

 

1. Taking a positive and enthusiastic role in your own personal epilepsy is a significant factor in helping your specialist neurology team to decrease seizure activity.

2. Make sure you have a strong grasp and understanding about the way your seizures affect you and the side effects of the medications that you have to take in order to give you the best possible chance to get on top of any issues.challenges. (Make sure you learn as much as possible about epilepsy more generally).

3. Work really hard to ensure you have a  positive relationship with your health care team is fundamental. If not don’t be frightened to ask for a second opinion, you are entitled to one. Having a good relationship with your health care professionals is really beneficial as they can refer you onto other specialist services in your local area.

4. There is every chance your seizure activity could possibly be reduced by identifying your seizure triggers. If so I recommend keeping a diary of any possible seizures that’s occur, the length of the seizure if known, type of seizure, it’s useful to keep notes of how you are feeling and any missed medications if possible. This paints an accurate picture for any future appointments.

5. Keep physically active, and aim for at least eight hours sleep per night.

6. Find personal ways to relax and manage stress (whatever this means for you) is exceedingly important, this will help maintain positive mental health and prevent depression and negative thought patterns developing.