Public Understanding

Every day, people living with this type of epilepsy go to work, take care of their children, take part in sports, ride buses, cross busy streets, go on escalators, wait for trains and – perhaps most difficult of all – risk having a seizure in front of a public that too often does not understand.

Dealing with the reactions of others may be the biggest challenge of all for people with complex partial seizures. That’s because many people find it hard to believe or accept that behavior which looks deliberate may not be.

Lack of public understanding has led to people with complex partial seizures being unfairly arrested as drunk or disorderly, being accused by others of unlawful activity, indecent exposure or drug abuse – all because of actions produced by seizures.Such actions may even be misdiagnosed as symptoms of mental illness, leading to inappropriate treatment and, in some cases, commitment to an institution.

The National Epilepsy Foundation and its affiliates, such as the Epilepsy Foundation of Alabama, are committed to increasing public awareness on seizures and epilepsy so that painful misunderstandings can be avoided. And you can, too! The Epilepsy Foundation of Alabama provides a number of different public health service programs designed for schools, the workplace, or for the home. These programs raise awareness and educate others on recognizing seizure signs and symptoms while enhancing the quality of life for individuals and families affected by seizures and epilepsy. Call the Epilepsy Foundation of Alabama to schedule a presentation today and help advocate for yourself or someone you love!