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

Just Posted

No hesitation; two bystanders assist in Penticton house fire rescue

“I’d do it for anybody,” says Penticton man after assisting in house fire rescue

RCMP, firefighters rally in support for health care workers in Kelowna

Pandosy Street was packed with supporters Saturday night

Two people sent to hospital after Penticton Fire Department extinguish house fire

The fire was reported just after 6:30 p.m. Saturday evening on Duncan Avenue

Stay away from landfills, Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen urges

Residents urged to use curbside collection services, stockpile recyclables during COVID-19 pandemic

Interior Health officials outline pandemic response in virtual town hall

Kelowna-Lake County MLA Norm Letnick moderates digital discussion, Q&A with Interior Health leadership

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

WATCH: Okanagan producer treats neighbours to live music from safe distance

Neighbours practiced social distancing as Jeff Johnson played songs from his front steps

Sewers stitch masks to free up supplies for front-line health-care workers

“We have little old ladies sewing up a storm,” said Joan Davis

Experts weigh in on best handling of groceries during COVID-19 pandemic

Study suggests the virus can live for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to three days on plastic

COVID-19 world update: Enforceable quarantine in NYC?; France orders 1 billion masks

Spain warns EU’s future at stake; New York governor calls Trump’s idea ‘federal declaration of war

Earth Hour 2020 kicks off online Saturday night

Action moves online due to COVID-19

Okanagan woman baking for those in need amid COVID-19

Vernon’s Crystal Hedlund launched a GoFundMe page to generate funds for baking materials

Okanagan distillery hands out thousands of sanitizer bottles, needs help in COVID-19 fight

Okanagan Springs is donating hand sanitizer to help fill COVID-induced shortages

B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Outbreak action underway in 12 long-term care homes

Most Read