Work and epilepsy

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Work and epilepsy

Let’s talk about a topic that is relevant to many: work and epilepsy. People with epilepsy consider finding a job as one of the main problems. 

In many countries of the world , the unemployment rate among patients with epilepsy is high and reaches 50%. The same picture is observed in Russia. Of the total number of patients registered in dispensaries, 50-60% are employed.    

After graduating from secondary school, epilepsy patients are less likely than healthy people to improve their qualifications by attending additional courses. Most of them are employed in unskilled labor. 

Prejudice against epilepsy is a significant factor limiting the employment of young people with the condition. Employers refuse to hire people with epilepsy after learning about the diagnosis. Patients with epilepsy often hide their diagnosis when applying for a job, so as not to lose the opportunity to find a job.       

The decision on selection for a specific type of activity should be made by the employer, first of all, on the basis of the qualification level of the individual, and not on the basis of the existing diagnosis.

Beneficial effect of work on the course of epilepsy

Work that brings satisfaction leads to the formation of a new dominant in the brain – a source of excitement, which dampens excitement in the epileptic focus. Observations of working patients prove the positive effect of work in that during the period of performing their professional duties, the number of seizures is significantly reduced. 

Being in a team of healthy people creates favorable psychological conditions. People with epilepsy look up to those around them in relationships . Smoothed their irritability , aggression, egocentrism. Positive psychological qualities are formed: endurance, self-control, striving for improvement and recovery. In a friendly work collective, when a seizure occurs, help can be expected rather than suspension from work.     

Who to be? What kind of work can a person with epilepsy do?

Most people who have seizures under control, successfully study at school with epilepsy, graduate from vocational colleges or higher educational institutions in those areas, can work in specialties that appeal to them.     

The list of possible occupations for people with epilepsy is huge. Choose for every taste. So, patients with rare epileptic seizures can work as doctors, teachers, social workers, lawyers, economists, auto mechanics, agronomists, librarians, historians, biologists, accountants, bookkeepers, controllers, locksmiths (not at the machine), tailors, seamstresses, fashion designers, educators , photographers, artists, scientists, translators, veterinarians, middle and senior managers, politicians, tour guides and many others. In the last decade, during the development of new technologies, the Internet has formed a separate industry – working on the Internet. Using new opportunities, you can get remote education on the Internet and start working as a freelancer .     

On the other hand, there are restrictions for working with epilepsy for drivers of trucks, buses and other vehicles, as well as for pilots. Serious difficulties arise for a teenager if he is going to connect his life with working with the police or become a military man. You should also not be guided by the profession of a diver or a firefighter. Exclude work at height, for example, the profession of a high-altitude installer. By avoiding the choice of these particular specialties, the patient with epilepsy can make a successful professional career that gives them self-confidence and brings satisfaction.  

It is advisable to change the work schedule with an increase in the patient’s epileptic seizures , switch to easier work or take an academic leave during the period of study.   

Patients with epilepsy – disabled people of the second group are able to do work at home , for example, sewing, decorating, weaving from straw. 

At home, with epilepsy, it is rational to engage in feasible work, such as cleaning, washing, cooking. If you have frequent seizures with falls and cramps, it is dangerous to do household chores such as ironing, washing windows, cooking on gas stoves, using a drill, and other similar activities. 

Despite the fact that “stigmatizing” people with epilepsy is a common point of view, most people with epilepsy feel like equal members of society. It is necessary to help get epilepsy out of the shadows. Motivation, the desire to work, the desire to master a certain profession can be of decisive importance. You just need to want, make efforts, you can achieve the goal.  

So work and epilepsy is an important social issue. Patients with disabilities who have a disability group in most cases can only do housework. There are a number of restrictions on the choice of professions related to safety (for example, driving vehicles, working at heights). Most patients do not need special help to become socially active working citizens. Patients with epilepsy have equal rights with other members of society to find a job, choose a profession, and find employment.            

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