Sudden, abnormal electrical activity in the brain may cause seizures. There are many different types of seizures, and some only have mild symptoms. The two main groups are focal or partial seizures that occur in just one part of the brain, while generalized seizures occur due to abnormal activity on both sides of the brain. Most seizures do not cause lasting harm and occur for thirty seconds to two minutes. Seizures lasting longer than five minutes, seizures that occur one after the other, and seizures that a person doesn't wake up between should be considered medical emergencies. Seizures have many causes, including certain diseases, medications, high fevers, and head injuries. Those with a brain disorder that causes recurring seizures have epilepsy.
Don't put anything in a person's mouth or try to hold his tongue (it can't be swallowed during a seizure). Don't restrain the person or give liquids during or immediately after seizure. Lay the person gently on a soft surface, loosen clothing, turn his head to the side, and reassure the person when he arouses.
First Aid for Seizures
Take the following steps for someone having a seizure:
Lay the person down gently on a soft surface, place a folded jacket or pillow under her head, and look for any medical identification.
Do not restrain the person; instead, turn her head to one side in order to keep the airway open and to protect the airway in case of vomiting.
Loosen ties, shirt collars, and clothing, and remove any glasses.
Reassure the person when she regains consciousness.
For any single seizures that last less than five minutes, ask the person for any known medical history of seizure to determine if hospital evaluation is necessary. For any multiple seizures, a seizure that lasts for five minutes or more, or if the person is pregnant, injured, or diabetic, call 911.