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Epilepsy: A Guide for Teachers and School Nurses

Epilepsy: A Guide for Teachers and School Nurses is a .pdf document that addresses pertinent information for teachers and school nurses. It is intended that parents of epileptic children to print and turn into the school as relevant information in case a seizure occurs during school hours.

Basic Information

To alleviate initial concerns, epilepsy is not contagious and therefore not dangerous to other students. However, violent seizures sometimes associated with epilepsy may endanger the epileptic child. Not all seizures involve violent convulsions and symptoms may be as mild as spacing out for 30 seconds. Regardless of the type of seizure, treat the student with special care as epilepsy can be linked to a feeling of increased social pressure and embarrassment. Keep in mind that the child’s behavior during a seizure is not intentional

It is important to stay calm and protect the child experiencing the seizure.

For Convulsive Seizures:

  1. Cushion the child’s head
  2. Loosen tight neckwear to ease breathing
  3. Turn the child onto his/her side
  4. Keep the child’s airway open
  5. Do not insert any object in the child’s mouth
  6. Do not hold down or restrain the child
  7. Remove any sharp or solid objects from nearby
  8. Note how long the seizure lasts and symptoms that occurred
  9. Stay with the child until the seizure ends

For Non-convulsive Seizures:

  1. Remove any dangerous objects from nearby
  2. Don’t try to stop the child from wandering unless the child is in danger
  3. Don’t shake the child or shout
  4. Stay with the child until he/she is alert

Call 911 for help if:

  • The seizure happened in water
  • The seizure lasts more than five minutes
  • The child does not begin breathing again or does not return to consciousness after the seizure
  • Another seizure starts before the child regains consciousness
  • The child has two or more seizures in a row
  • The child incurred injuries from the seizure

Prepared in partnership with Kevin McHugh, BS (class of 2009), Case Western Reserve University School of Engineering.

More articles about epilepsy:

For more information:

Go to the Epilepsy health topic.