Purple Day is an international grassroots effort dedicated to increasing awareness about epilepsy worldwide. On March 26th annually, people in countries around the world are invited to wear purple and host events in support of epilepsy awareness. Last year, people in dozens of countries on all continents including Antarctica participated in Purple Day! This year marked the first time the city of Allegan participated. Inspired in part by a little boy named Wyatt who lives in their community. His aunt, Jamie Morton, reached out to Allegan City Clerk Danielle Bird and Allegan City Promotions Coordinator Parker Johnson who were able to make make it happen.

Wyatt began have seizures at just six months of age. On February 21st of this year, Wyatt had an 18 minute tonic clonic (grand mal) seizure. His mom Melissa had to administer emergency medication twice and call 911. That day changed the two's world. Wyatt had to be pulled from preschool, have major changes to needed medication as well as many doctor appointments.

Quick Facts
There are approximately 50 million people around the world living with epilepsy.
It’s estimated that 1 in 100 people have epilepsy
There are more than 300,000 Canadians living with epilepsy.
There are approximately 2.2 million Americans living with epilepsy.
Epilepsy is NOT contagious. Epilepsy is NOT a disease. Epilepsy is NOT a psychological disorder.

There is currently no “cure” for epilepsy. However, for 10-15% of people with epilepsy, the surgical removal of the seizure focus – the part of brain where the person’s seizures start – can eliminate all seizure activity. For more than half of people with epilepsy, medication will control their seizures. Additionally, some children will outgrow their epilepsy and some adults may have a spontaneous remission.
Not everyone can identify specific events or circumstances that affect seizures, but some are able to recognize definite seizure triggers.

 

Some common triggers include:

-Forgetting to take prescribed seizure medication

-Lack of sleep

-Missing meals

-Stress, excitement, emotional upset

-Menstrual cycle / hormonal changes

-Illness or fever

-Low seizure medication levels

-Medications other than prescribed seizure medication

-Flickering lights of computers, television, videos, etc., and sometimes even bright sunlight

-Street drugs

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