Letting your child have the right amount of freedom can be difficult for any parent, but when you throw the unpredictability of epilepsy into the mix, things can get really challenging!
Despite this, becoming more independent is a crucial part of growing up for any child. It is important that you are not overly controlling with your child so that, in time, they can become good decision-makers in their own right and will be able to manage their epilepsy themselves.
In this blog post, we give you some helpful tips on letting your child be independent in spite of their epilepsy.
Learn as much as you can about epilepsy
Firstly, to encourage and support your child in their epilepsy journey, you must learn as much as you can about the condition. Then you can discuss epilepsy openly and honestly with your child, and establish where boundaries need to be set.
Don’t let your child’s epilepsy define them
However, it’s important not to let your child’s epilepsy define them. Try not to think of your child as sick or fragile because of their condition – hopefully you will soon reach the stage where their epilepsy is manageable.
Your child’s achievements in life and their general well-being are far more important than their epilepsy, and it is important to remember this when deciding what they can and can’t do.
Don’t rule out independent sports or activities
You might think that certain sports and activities such as cycling or swimming are off limits to your child living with epilepsy. However, it’s always worth consulting your child’s doctor or paediatrician before ruling them out completely – sports can be a great opportunity for your child to gain independence and to make friends.
While some activities may have to be limited (particularly when seizures are unpredictable), it’s important for your child to have as many of the same opportunities as their peers as possible.
Thankfully, technology is available that can make day-to-day living much easier. There are now products thatcan really help to settle your mind about your child’s safety, and allow them to gain the independence they need.
For example, seizure alarms make it possible to always know when your child has a seizure and be able to react accordingly even if you aren’t with them.
Another great solution is the anti-suffocation pillow. These ensure that, if your child has a seizure in the night, they will still be able to breathe. This allows you to be at ease, and your child to have more independence.
If you are a parent of a child living with epilepsy, why not let other parents know any tips or advice that you have in the comments below…