October 23rd: SUDEP Awareness

SUDEP-campaign-adIt’s only fitting that I started a blog yesterday and then had cluster seizures for a large part of the evening and couldn’t finish it :). Alas, today is a new day!

What is SUDEP?

“SUDEP is the sudden, unexpected death of someone with epilepsy, who was otherwise healthy. In SUDEP cases, no other cause of death is found when an autopsy is done. Each year, about 1 in 1,000 adults and 1 in 4,500 children with epilepsy die from SUDEP. This is the leading cause of death in people with uncontrolled seizures.” Source Epilepsy Foundation: Click here to be directed to the Epilepsy Foundation website.

Take your medication(s).
Not some of the time, not most of the time… Every single time. I struggled with remembering if I had taken my morning does until someone on a support group I joined asked what other people do to remember to take their medications.

-Personally, I have to take 1 1/2 pills for one of my medications, so I take the first half in the morning and leave the other half in the pill cutter for the evening. I use one similar to this.

pill splitter


-Set an alarm on your phone and don’t shut it off until the pills are in your mouth. If you have a phone or alarm clock, this is free…

-Use a calendar and mark  / for the morning dose and  \ for the evening dose, so at the end of the day you have an x. Pocket calendars are online and in most stores for around $5- nothing fancy, just a very basic calendar. I found this one on amazon for 7.95 and it starts Nov 2018- Dec 2019. I like it because it’s monthly and also weekly- Ive found that I absolutely have to write things down or I forget; this one can be used for daily tasks and appointments too 🙂

Pocket Calendar

-Turn your pill bottle upside down after you take your morning dose, and then right side up after you take your evening dose. Also free 🙂

-Use a pill organizer with AM and PM. You can get these practically anywhere and they’re not terribly expensive. This one is 6.99 on amazon. Pill Organizer

Limit your alcohol intake:

I say limit because there’s evidence that suggests as intoxication levels rise, so does your risk of SUDEP. Does this mean zero alcohol? That’s up to your medical professional and you to decide. Personally, I go by how I’m feeling; if I have an aura or feel “off” I don’t drink at all. If I’m feeling fabulous and want a glass of red wine, I’ll have a glass or two; but that’s all.

alcohol blanket celebration champagne
Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com

The Epilepsy Foundation says this about alcohol and seizures,

“In small amounts, alcohol does not cause seizures. A drink or two now and then does not increase seizure activity.”

Click here to read more on alcohol and seizures.

Get enough sleep!

Take into account that everyone’s sleep needs are different.  Some people do well on 5 hours / night, others need 8 to 10 hours or more. In general, 7-8 hours of sleep a night is considered good, but the quality of sleep also needs to be considered.

Eat Well & Exercise regularly.

For me, this means following the Modified Atkins Diet and keeping my carbohydrate count at or below 10% of my caloric intake for the day. I plan to blog more about my diet therapy experience. Is this something that people want to

Limit stress.

A bog about reducing stress in my life is in the works! The Epilepsy Foundation has this to say about stress and epilepsy.


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