A seizure is abnormal electrical activity in the brain. Most seizures stop within a few minutes and are often caused by a medical condition called epilepsy. Seizures also can be caused by head injury, missed medications, low blood sugar, heat-related injury, poisoning, or sudden cardiac arrest.

Signs of a Seizure:

  • Lose muscle control
  • Have jerking movement of the arms, legs, and sometimes other parts of the body
  • Fall to the ground
  • Stop responding

Not all seizures look like this. Other people might become unresponsive and have a glassy-eyed stare.

Actions to help a person who is having a seizure:

  • Move furniture or objects out of the way – Protect the person from injury.
  • Place a small pad or towel under the person’s head.
  • Phone 911 and get the first aid kit.

Actions to help a person after a seizure:

  • Quickly check to see if the person is responsive and breathing.
  • Stay with the person until someone with more advanced training arrives and takes over.
  • If the person is having trouble breathing because of vomiting or fluids in the mouth, roll the person onto to her side.
  • If she is unresponsive and is not breathing normally or only gasping, give CPR.

If the person has bitten her tongue, cheek, or mouth and is bleeding, give first aid after the seizure.