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How to Help Someone Having A Seizure

by Nellie

How to Help Someone Having A Seizure

How to Help Someone Having A Seizure

We interrupt today’s normal Friday Fitness Check-In to discuss a scary situation that occured in my group fitness class yesterday.

Let’s start from the beginning, shall we?

I arrived at my normal thursday afternoon Zumba class and I took a position near the front. Usually I am a front row diva, but today all the spots were taken. We began following the instructor (who is also a mentor to me in the game) and during the fourth song I saw her facial expression change. She is usually super smiley and focused so when I saw her looking in the mirror towards the back of the room with concern I knew something was up.

By the time I looked around there was a woman lying on the floor shaking uncontrollably.

I didn’t know it right away but she was having a seizure.

Immediately two women ran over to her and put her on her side, she was still shaking uncontrollably and her eyes were closed.

I heard a lot of yelling but I couldn’t comprehend any of it. That’s when I ran to the music system and cut it off so we could get directions.

By that time someone had run upstairs to get help and almost all of us were trying to call 911 but because we were in the basement we had shotty service.

Finally, management came down and let us know that the paramedics were on their way. Since we were all standing around her helplessly they told us to go.

seizure

The seizure was timed by the nurse and it was around 4 and a half minutes. It took even longer before she could tell us her name and what day it was. She had no clue what happened.

Scariest part? This had never happened to her before. She has no history of seizures.

Seeing this happen made me super aware of how easily this could happen in my class, in any class, or even to someone sitting next to me on the train.

Having those skilled women in my class gave me a great first hand lesson on how to take proper care of a person having a seizure.

I did some research and found this graphic on how to handle a person who is having a seizure. If you don’t know it already burn it into your brain until you do. You never know when you will need this information and its better to be prepared than sorry.

epilepsy

This is also a really great reminder to make sure your in case of emergency contacts are listed in your phone by indicating (ICE) next to designated contacts. It’s really super important to be CPR certified as well.

Have you ever known someone with/witnessed a seizure? Do you know how to handle it?

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46 comments

Carla September 6, 2013 - 6:41 am

Lucas was an epileptic. Technically I suppose he could have a seizure at any time but he hasn’t since he was three. They are so scary! It does take so.e time before so.done can really respond after a seizure because they have just depleted all their brain waves (the simple way the Dr described it to me). Great post! More people should be prepared for emergency situations.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:20 pm

I am glad Lucas hasn’t had any more seizures. It is really good information to know. I honestly don’t think I’ll ever forget it!

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Allie September 6, 2013 - 7:01 am

Wow that must have been super scary for ALL involved. This is a timely post for me as well…my uncle had a seizure just a few days ago!!! It was his first one ever and (of course) scared the daylights out of my aunt. Apparently he took some medication and had a horrible reaction to it. He’s fine now, but wow – so scary. Thank you for this!! I feel empowered by knowing what to do.
I hope that woman is ok and is back at Zumba soon!!

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:19 pm

wow! I didn’t even know that medication could cause seizures too! I am glad your uncle is okay!

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Janine September 6, 2013 - 7:42 am

Thant sounded so scary and just hope she is Ok, but thank you for sharing the seizure procedures here. I really never witnessed one myself and it is good to know just in case.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:17 pm

You are welcome Janine!

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Joi September 6, 2013 - 8:00 am

Such an excellent and informative post and most appropriate for you being a fitness instructor. Super proud of this Nellie & especially for thinking to turn off the music 🙂 ! Sorry you had to experience this. Any health related scare can be very nerve wracking. Good deal you had people in there who knew what to do.

I do know what to do and I appreciate you sharing this information with your audience. I am pinning!

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:16 pm

Exactly, we were so lucky that the “first responders” jumped right into action.

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The Dose of Reality September 6, 2013 - 8:28 am

Wow. It is scary that she’d never had a seizure before. (and 4 1/2 minutes is a long time for a seizure. the 5 minute mark is an absolute medical emergency called status epilepticus)
These are excellent tips and exactly how people should respond. You all did a great job. (and good level headed thinking to cut the music so you all could hear instructions).
It’s also SO IMPORTANT to have your ICE contact in your cell phone. Everyone should have that. Everyone.
Fantastic post, Nellie. Thank you so much for getting this information out there. –Lisa

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:16 pm

It was my pleasure. I think it is great to be prepared, but I so hope no one has to use these instructions!

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Kita September 6, 2013 - 9:19 am

Very scary and I have never witnessed one before. I am a panic person so I think I would panic if I saw one but I am glad for the most part everyone remained calm. I hope she got checked out and is better now. I am curious as to what causes seizures especially if you have no history. *goes off to google*

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:15 pm

Yes, I heard that dehydration may have played a part.

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Honeybee September 6, 2013 - 9:27 am

Very helpful, Nellie! I’ve never experience case like this and I have no idea what to do if I were in that kind of situation. Thanks for sharing the guideline. It’s good to know to be prepared.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:15 pm

You are welcome Honeybee!

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Yum Yucky September 6, 2013 - 10:10 am

So glad you posted this, Nellie. Thank you for caring enough to do so. I’ve never been around anyone who had a seizure, but I’ve been wanting to increase my skills/knowledge in first aid in general. The info you’ve shared here is priceless. xo

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:14 pm

You are welcome Josie, I so hope you never have to use it!

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Tamara September 6, 2013 - 10:28 am

I do know how to handle a seizure now, but the first time I witnessed one I didn’t! It was very strange. It was a friend with no history of seizures, before or since. He had a needle phobia and he watched our diabetic friend check her blood sugar. He seemed fine but the next thing we knew he was seizing and vomiting. Our friend downstairs was an EMT and I ran and got him. It was over in a matter of seconds in his case. VERY scary.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:14 pm

wow! that is a crazy story! A seizure from a phobia? I have never heard of such a thing!

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FitBritt September 6, 2013 - 10:39 am

Wow! Oh my gosh! I can’t even imagine this happening. How scary! Thank you so much for posting this. I would probably not know what to do.

Also, I’m a front row diva too! 🙂

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:13 pm

ha I know you are girl!!!

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Michelle September 6, 2013 - 10:51 am

That must have been terribly scary. My youngest had a condition that mimicked what looked like a seizure when he was younger, and I was terrified. It was one of the scariest things I have ever had to deal with. Thank you so much for sharing this with us!

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:12 pm

wow, Witnessing it is just terrifying! I can’t even imagine watching my child, I’d probably go into freak out mode.

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veronica September 6, 2013 - 11:18 am

Oh no! How absolutely scary. Poor women. I’m glad she had a caring and knowledged group of ladies surrounding her. Thank you sooo much for the info. I will most certainly keep it in mind I am ever in a situation where it is needed.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:11 pm

Yes, it is super important to know!

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Kim September 6, 2013 - 12:54 pm

So scary for all of y’all but especially the woman who had the seizure. Thanks for the tips – I knew some but I didn’t know that you were supposed to time the seizure – good information!!

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:10 pm

you are welcome Kim!

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Britton September 6, 2013 - 7:58 pm

That’s scary. I’ve never witnessed someone having a seizure before, and I probably would have been like most of you were, just standing there looking helpless because I would not know WHAT to do. I’m glad there were people around that DID know what to do and I’m glad the lady was ok.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:07 pm

Exactly I was thanking the Lord that there was prepared personnel on hand!

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Frances September 7, 2013 - 2:49 am

So glad to come across this tonight. My husband just had the same thing happen to him today on the basket ball court. (not him, but another player) I am sending him the link right now!!

Have a wonderful weekend!!

Frances

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:07 pm

WOW! Thanks for dropping by Frances, I hope your hubby finds the info useful!

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Whitney September 7, 2013 - 2:02 pm

Great tips Nellie, long time ago when I was a freshman in high school, a girl had a seizure in gym class. She was shaking and our teacher was trying to keep her from swallowing her tongue. I still have a vivid memory of that happening.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:06 pm

I think once you witness it, it stays with you forever!

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Losing in the City September 7, 2013 - 3:53 pm

thanks Nellie for this.. i had a boss who had a seizure at work and a close cousin. When you are a witness to it, it shakes you up pretty bad (at least for me it did).. hope all is well with the woman who had the seizure. scary to think that it was her first time..

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 10:05 pm

wow that must have been terrifying. I was pretty shaken up for a while I was hyper aware of everyone and everything.

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Leah September 7, 2013 - 10:53 pm

I have a sister who has epilepsy, and work with people with head injuries (who are more susceptible to seizures) so have some awareness, but it is so important to review procedures so that you can stay calm and help. So great that you are educating us all!

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 9:56 pm

Thanks girl, I’m just passing on what I learned!

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Quiana September 9, 2013 - 12:20 am

How frightening! I’ve been in a few scary moments including one when a close family member fainted while shopping with me. It’s so hard sometimes to remember what you’ve been trained to do in an emergency and this post is a welcome reminder. Thank you!

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 9:56 pm

You are welcome Quiana! 😉

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Lashawn September 9, 2013 - 6:53 pm

GREAT advice. Seisures can be scary. Most people never remember them.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 9:54 pm

thats right! she had no idea what happened to her.

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Hope September 9, 2013 - 8:27 pm

Awesome post Nellie. Seizures can be very scary. I pinned it to hopefully spread the word. People have a tendency to try to restrain someone during a seizure. Great reminder of what to and not to do. I’ve been around a couple of people at different times having a seizure. It’s amazing that once you know what to do…in an emergency it all comes back. Unfortunately you can’t do anything to stop the seizure, but you can make sure the person is alright during and after.

Way to go with cutting the music too. It seemed lots of people sprung into action… as I’m sure it was very scary for the person undergoing the seizure.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 9:52 pm

Right, exactly. I think most folks are trying to stop the seizure when really you just need it to work itself out.

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KalleyC September 11, 2013 - 11:59 am

How scary! So glad that the women in the class had experience, and knew what to do. Thank you for posting this, you can never tell when this will come in handy.

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Nellie September 12, 2013 - 9:50 pm

Yes, it was super intense. I am very thankful that we had experienced personnel on hand!

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