Helping Children Understand Epilepsy

Helping Children Understand Epilepsy

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In Indonesia, epilepsy is considered as a punishment of dark forces, in Uganda they believe that it is contagious and they do not let epileptics eat with others and even, in the first world power, the United States, until 1980 it was forbidden to marry people with this sickness. The ignorance about it is great, and today there are still many misconceptions about epilepsy, for this reason it is important, above all, in the International Epilepsy Day, help normalize disease in society.

Did you know that characters like Napoleon Bonaparte, Julius Caesar or Alexander the Great suffered from it? Epilepsy is a disease that can affect anyone regardless of age, sex, race or country. However, the lack of knowledge about her, causes that many children suffer social discrimination. I know of two cases of women with epilepsy and one of them keeps it secret because she thinks she will be stigmatized if it becomes public.

To publicize epilepsy, theMadrid Epilepsy Association has edited a story entitledEpileto, a special friend, with which he intends to make this disease known in schools and thus promote the integration of children who suffer from it. 'It is like a storm that passes inside the head: the sky turns gray, it rains a lot and lightning and thunder appear, until the storm ends and the sun rises again'With these words Epileto explains in the story to his classmates what happens to his friend Leo when he has a crisis. This is a great initiative, since to help children it is necessary to speak their language, and a story is an ideal vehicle to convey more information about epilepsy to children.

And there is still a lot of ignorance about it. When we hear the word epilepsy imagine the scene of a person on the floor with convulsions who drools and loses control. However, these seizures are only one type of epilepsy, there are many varieties and each has its symptoms. Children and the elderly are those who have the highest risk of suffering from it, so it is important to explain to children what this disease is and normalize it in the face of society. It is not only about helping children with epilepsy, but also about avoiding situations like Indonesia, Uganda or the United States.

In short, with the proper treatment, 70% of epileptic patients manage not to have seizures and in some cases they can stop the medication after a few years. They are therefore people like others, capable of living and coexisting like the rest.

Source: Madrid Association of Epilepsy (AME)

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