Why NEAM Matters
National Epilepsy Awareness Month is an annual event observed throughout November, where The Epilepsy Foundation takes center stage in promoting awareness and raising funds for epilepsy-related causes. The primary aim is to encourage collaboration and action among individuals and communities. During this month, there are numerous opportunities to engage:
1. Campaigns: Participate in various awareness campaigns that shed light on the challenges faced by individuals with epilepsy and their families. 2. Fundraising Efforts: Contribute to fundraising initiatives dedicated to advancing epilepsy research and improving the lives of those affected by the condition. 3. Volunteer Opportunities: Get involved in volunteering activities organized by The Epilepsy Foundation, both locally and virtually. Whether you're hosting events, giving educational talks, or lending a helping hand to your community, your efforts can make a real impact. 4. Social Media Awareness: Harness the power of social media to raise awareness about epilepsy. Use the hashtag #NEAM to join the conversation and share valuable resources and information about epilepsy organizations and upcoming events.
Understanding Epilepsy: Key Facts
To actively participate in NEAM, it's essential to have a solid understanding of epilepsy. Here are some crucial facts:
- Epilepsy is a Brain Disorder: It's a condition characterized by recurrent seizures, which can affect different parts of the brain.
- Diverse Causes: Epilepsy can arise from various factors, including brain tumors, strokes, brain infections, and traumatic brain injuries. However, in many cases, the exact cause remains unknown.
- Prevalence: Approximately 3 million adults and 470,000 children in the United States have epilepsy, underscoring the importance of awareness and support. It's a condition that can affect people of all ages, races, backgrounds, and geographical locations.
- Management Options: Treatment options for epilepsy include antiepileptic medications like carbamazepine (Tegretol), ethosuximide (Zarontin), everolimus (Afinitor), gabapentin (Neurontin), and lacosamide (Vimpat), diet therapy, and surgery.
How to Show Your Support
Wondering how you can show your support during NEAM? It's easier than you might think:
- Wear Purple: Throughout November, sport a purple ribbon or purple clothing items to raise visibility and start conversations about NEAM.
- Learn First Aid for Epilepsy: Equip yourself with the knowledge of how to respond when someone experiences a seizure. Learning first aid and CPR can be a lifesaver in these situations.
- Epilepsy Awareness Merchandise: Consider purchasing epilepsy awareness merchandise, such as T-shirts, branded tote bags, and wristbands. Many of these purchases contribute to organizations funding epilepsy research and treatment.
- Donate: Support reputable epilepsy organizations like Purple Day Every Day, The Epilepsy Foundation, The International League Against Epilepsy, or Cure Epilepsy by making donations. Your contributions can drive progress in epilepsy research and care.
- Spread the Word: Educate your friends, family, and colleagues about epilepsy. Share information on social media, along with links to fundraising pages and resources. By doing so, you'll encourage others to join the cause.
- Help with Medication Costs: Show people how to save on their epilepsy medications by using RxLess. This simple act can significantly improve their quality of life by making treatment more affordable and ensuring they can afford their medication every time.
As November unfolds, let's come together to make a difference in the lives of those affected by epilepsy. National Epilepsy Awareness Month is an opportunity for us to unite, learn, and support each other. Together, we can reduce stigma, raise awareness, and bring us one step closer to a world where epilepsy is better understood and treated. Join us in making this November a memorable one for the epilepsy community!