Creating a Safe Home Environment for Seizures

The risk that a person with epilepsy will be injured during a seizure at home can be greatly reduced by taking some simple safety precautions:

  • Carpet the floors with heavy pile and thick underpadding.
  • If tables and other furniture have sharp corners, pad them. When shopping for new furniture, look for rounded corners.

  • Close fireplace screens when the fire is burning. Don't leave a person with uncontrolled seizures alone in a room with a burning fire.

  • Avoid using space heaters that can tip over.

  • If the person with epilepsy wants to iron clothing or use a curling iron, be sure that the device has an automatic shut-off switch to prevent burns.

  • Use chairs with arms to help prevent falling.

In the bathroom

  • Hang doors so they open outwards instead of inwards. Then if the person falls against the door, it can still be opened.

  • Use carpeting on the floor, with extra padding.

  • Routinely check that the drain works properly before the person takes a bath or shower.
  • If the person falls frequently, consider using a shower or tub seat with a safety strap.

  • Keep water levels in the tub low.

  • Set the temperature of the water heater low (120 degrees F [48.9C]) so that it won't scald a person who loses consciousness.

  • The person with epilepsy should not use any electrical appliances in the bathroom or near water.

In the kitchen

  • Cook with a microwave oven.

  • When using the stove, try to use the back burners.

  • Use plastic containers, plates, and drinking cups whenever possible.

  • Use cups with lids (commuter cups) to prevent burns from spills.

  • If the person with epilepsy needs to move containers of hot food or liquids, it is safer to slide them along the counter or use a cart to move them to another room.

  • It is safer for the person to wear rubber gloves when handling knives or washing dishes and glassware in the sink.

Our Mission

The mission of the Epilepsy Foundation is to lead the fight to overcome the challenges of living with epilepsy and to accelerate therapies to stop seizures, find cures, and save lives.

 
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