Managing epilepsy requires a team approach. You and your family or loved ones are the main players on your team. As you takes steps on your journey you’ll find other health care professionals and community supports who will be very valuable to you.

Learning as much you can about epilepsy and it’s treatment will be key in helping you control seizures. The treatment won’t work by itself. YOU and your team will need to work together to make it work.

Here’s a few tips about what to do first:

  • Before your doctor’s visit, write down a list of your concerns and questions. Use a notebook, pad of paper, smartphone, seizure diary, or anything that works for you! Remember, it’s your epilepsy so whatever concerns you have, write them down!
  • Take your notes and list of questions and concerns to every visit. Then tell him or her you’d like time to talk about them. If they can’t answer the questions you have at the time, set up another appointment to make sure you get them asked, and answered! There is no stupid or silly question.
  • Don’t be afraid to tell your doctor, and your family, that there are some parts about epilepsy that you don’t understand or that you need some help. Epilepsy can be complicated, especially when it’s new to you.
  • If you don’t understand the information given to you, tell them! Info is no good if it’s not explained in a way you can understand. Ask what medical terms mean, just don’t guess. It’s important that you, your doctor and team are all talking the same language!
  • After you visit your doctor or health care professional, write down what was talked about and what you’re going to do next. If a change in treatment is being made, make sure you know what to do and write it all down. If some questions didn’t get answered, write them again for next time.
  • If the doctor recommends a seizure medicine, learn as much as you can about it, including when and how to take it. Then be sure to follow the doctor's directions. Seizure medicines must be taken each and every day as prescribed. If the right amount is not taken at the right time, the medicine may not be able to prevent seizures.
  • Talk to your family, loved ones or whoever helps you with your epilepsy. Review what happened at the visit and write down what things they learned too or what questions they have.
  • Browse around - it's a great place to find answers and to connect with other people with seizures and epilepsy!



Authored By: 
Steven C. Schachter, MD
Patty Obsorne Shafer RN, MN
Joseph I. Sirven MD
Authored Date: 
Reviewed By: 
Joseph I. Sirven MD
Patty Obsorne Shafer RN, MN
Wednesday, March 19, 2014