Epilepsy Talk

Damaged Goods

September 21, 2019
34 Comments

There’s something liberating in being expected to fail. No expectations, no explanations.

After all, “you’ll never amount to anything,” you’re damaged goods.

So you’re free to fall on your face. Or reach for the stars. I did both.


A Caregiver’s Guide to Survival…

September 18, 2019
7 Comments

It’s called “burn out.” Because, let’s face it, being a caregiver is exhausting.

You may feel guilt, resentment, anger, anxiety or helplessness.

You may have to give up your income and career prospects to care for someone.

Even if you love the person very deeply, it can feel as though the focus is always on them and your needs and wishes go unnoticed. 

Often you deal with the situation alone and feel very isolated.

(My mother-in-law didn’t leave the house for two years when my father-in-law was dying.)

But you can’t do anything to help another person if you’re a basket case yourself.

To be the best caregiver possible, you need to be physically and emotionally well, yourself.

After all, how effective can you be…


The Hill-Burton Act: The Government’s Best-Kept Secret

September 15, 2019
1 Comment

Years ago, two men with the last names of Hill and Burton created a bill which assists people with medical expenses, unable to pay them.

It’s only for people of limited financial means. 

However, if you Google “Hill-Burton Act” or go to https://www.hrsa.gov/get-health-care/affordable/hill-burton/facilities.html you’ll find a gold mine of information about who qualifies, which facilities are obligated to provide free or reduced-cost health care and how to apply.


Epilepsy and Electrolytes

September 12, 2019
28 Comments

It’s a situation often mentioned but rarely understood – the effects electrolytes have on seizures.

But a simple blood test can detect the danger of unbalanced electrolytes.

Taking extra doses of certain minerals can help to prevent side-effects that may follow the long-term use of some seizure medicines.

And taking supplements can help protect the brain (as can a B-Vitamin complex), but it’s no guarantee of seizure control, since there are a lot of different factors at play that can trigger a seizure.

But, making sure you have the right nutrients is just as important as having the right balance between all of them, so that proper electrical connections are maintained.


Epileptic Synesthesia: What Is It?

September 7, 2019
47 Comments

A friend of mine with TLE, told me he had synesthesia and I didn’t have a clue what he was talking about. And so, I set to find out exactly what this mysterious sounding condition was…

First of all, Epileptic Synesthesia is pretty rare.

It occurs in 4% of temporal lobe seizures and is theoretically caused by the actual electric discharge or abnormal stimulation of the brain in a seizure.

Sight, sound, touch, taste (and, much less often, your sense of smell) sensations can occur simultaneously and also involve involuntary movement.


Epilepsy Triumphs

September 1, 2019
22 Comments

You can either become a victim of epilepsy and let epilepsy take over your life.

Or you can simply say, “I have epilepsy” and decide your own fate.


What Most Offends YOU About How People Treat Epilepsy?

August 29, 2019
33 Comments

I call epilepsy the “stealth condition,” because most people don’t actually witness a seizure.

Which results in an abundance of ignorance…misinformation..and to be frank, discrimination and slurs.


Suicide and Epilepsy

August 23, 2019
21 Comments

The statistics are depressing. (Which is one of the chief factors in suicide.) But studies say that suicide can happen to anyone at any age.

Statistics

Studies show that newly diagnosed epilepsy patients are five times more likely to commit suicide than patients who had been diagnosed more than six months previously.

And a 29-fold increase in suicide risk was seen in newly diagnosed patients with a history of psychiatric illness.

“Newly diagnosed patients often have many misconceptions about the disease,” researcher Per Sidenius, MD, of Aarhus University says. “They often don’t understand that there are good treatments with few side effects.”


Why Won’t You Play With Me?

August 20, 2019
14 Comments

Once upon a time there was this girl named Ellen.

She had epilepsy and she hated the world.

So the world hated her back.

She had no friends and didn’t speak to anybody.

In turn, nobody spoke to her. Except the occasional bully.


Lefties Unite!

August 17, 2019
17 Comments

So you have epilepsy.  And you’re left-handed.  Is it a curse…a blessing…or a challenge?

Well, you’re not exactly alone.  Between six and sixteen percent of people today are left-handed. And guess what? 

Left-handedness is also associated with a higher incidence of epilepsy. 

Gee, what a surprise!

But, here’s the good news…


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    About the author

    Phylis Feiner Johnson

    Phylis Feiner Johnson

    I've been a professional copywriter for over 35 years. I also had epilepsy for decades. My mission is advocacy; to increase education, awareness and funding for epilepsy research. Together, we can make a huge difference. If not changing the world, at least helping each other, with wisdom, compassion and sharing.

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