March 26 is Purple Day– Epilepsy Awareness Day. One in 100 people will be diagnosed with epilepsy. (file contributed/canadianepilepsyalliance.org)

Purple Day 2020: Epilepsy awareness heads online

More than 260,000 Canadians are diagnosed with epilepsy

March 26 is an important day for 1 in 100 Canadians: it’s Purple Day, also known as Epilepsy Awareness Day.

While usually the day would entail public events and local displays of support, due to COVID-19 the day’s celebrations have moved online.

Using hashtags like #purpleday #epilepsyawareness and #Iam1in100 people are sharing their stories, myth-busting facts and showing support for people living with epilepsy.

ALSO READ: Victoria marks epilepsy awareness day

Epilepsy is a neurological disease resulting in seizures caused by the misfiring of neurons in the brain. It can have many causes including genetics, physical brain abnormalities such as malignant or benign tumors and head injuries. However, two-thirds of people diagnosed with epilepsy will never learn why they are having seizures.

Seizures take many forms, and are not always the physical spasms kind seen on TV. Some include absence seizures (where people “space out”), focal seizures (repeated movements or actions), and myoclonic seizures (sudden jolts), and many others.

There is no cure for epilepsy, though most people can find some control with medication. Up to 30 per cent of people with epilepsy, however, may have medication-resistant seizures. Some people also require brain surgery to limit seizure activity.

ALSO READ: Purple Day marks long journey for Gorge resident

If you ever see someone going through a seizure, there are several steps that can be taken: time the seizure, and call 911 if it lasts longer than five minutes, if the person is injured as a result of the seizure, if the person is pregnant or diabetic, or if you are uncertain if the person has epilepsy. While the seizure is going on, protect the person from injury by removing nearby dangerous objects. If the person falls, lay them on the side when it is safe to do so and do not put anything in their mouth. If the person wanders, stay with them and keep them safe until the seizure ends.

For more information, visit canadianepilepsyalliance.org.

vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter
and Instagram

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

ARTS AROUND: Alberni Valley artists come together at Rollin Art Centre

New exhibit features First Nations paintings and carvings

Search and rescue crews continue to look for missing Black Creek hiker

Searchers scouring Strathcona Park near Gold River for experienced 65-year-old on 40-kilometre trek

West Coast Hockey Prep Camp returns to Port Alberni, a little smaller

Prep camp owners rolling with COVID-19 changes, including smaller classes

A LOOK BACK: Port Alberni’s fireboats

Delve into the city’s past with the Alberni Valley Museum’s online digital archives

Vancouver Island communities receive gov’t funding for infrastructure projects

Huu-ay-aht First Nations builds community with $1.8M grant, one among six on Island

B.C. records 31 new cases, six deaths over three days due to COVID-19

There are 166 active cases in B.C., 16 people in hospital

96-year-old woman scales B.C. butte with help of family, friends

‘I did as I was told and I enjoyed every minute of it’

Parallel crises: How COVID-19 exacerbated B.C.’s drug overdose emergency

Part 1: Officials say isolation, toxic drug supply, CERB, contributing to crisis

Canadians with disabilities disproportionately hit by COVID-19 pandemic

More than four out of 10 British Columbians aged 70 and up have various disabilities

Camping offers a great pandemic escape, for less money than you might think

But for many first-timers, knowing what to bring can be a challenge

Turbulence in Canadian opinion on airlines COVID-19 response: poll

Thousands of people have beseeched Transport Minister Marc Garneau to compel airlines to issue refunds,

Police issue warning after baby comes across suspected drugs in Kamloops park

The 11-month-old girl’s mother posted photos on social media showing a small plastic bag containing a purple substance

Most Read