Purple Day was founded in Canada by nine years old Cassidy Megan in 2008 who has epilepsy and was having a hard time coping and wanted to raise awareness to help people understand. Since then people have joined forces in creating awareness on the 26th March every year.
Epilepsy is often referred to as the ‘hidden condition’. This is because, unless someone sees you having a seizure, they often have no idea that you have epilepsy! This often means that some people have very little understanding of what epilepsy really is. Or, that there are over 40 different types of epilepsy and types of seizure. Or, that it can affect everyone differently.
The beauty of Purple Day is that it offers a light-hearted way to get people thinking and talking about epilepsy. This in turn can remove some of the stigma, misconceptions and fear that people may have regarding this common serious neurological condition.
You can help support this cause and create awareness in many ways, a fundraising event, cake sale, fancy dress or you can simply wear purple and donate some money, the more people that get involved the greater the awareness. Last year five key landmarks also turned purple, showing epilepsy’s true colours by switching on purple lights. This year it is said there will be more.
By talking about epilepsy, sharing your stories we can let the public know what epilepsy is really like and get rid of some of those most common misconceptions.misunderstandings, such as:
- All seizures look the same
- You take a pill to cure epilepsy
- Everyone grows out of epilepsy
Here are a few facts surrounding the reality of epilepsy:-
- There is no known cure for epilepsy
- Over 30% of people with epilepsy have seizures that do not respond to drug treatment
- In over 60% of cases there is no known cause
- Every year 1,100 people die as a result of epilepsy
- Epilepsy is not a disease nor a psychological disorder
There are approximately 50 million people around the world living with epilepsy and it is said that 1 in 100 people have epilepsy that’s how common it is and yet the condition receives little publicity and even less research funding.
As someone who suffers with epilepsy I am very passionate about creating awareness as I have experienced the looks of pity after having a seizure in public, the funny looks when you present a disabled rail card as I don’t have a visible disability.
Epilepsy is so varied, it’s not just about dropping on the floor and shaking, or about flashing lights. I’ve had many different types of seizure and have tried two different medications, but when my brain is scanned it looks normal.
People with epilepsy appear normal, you can’t tell someone has it just by looking at them, yet I have this disability and the biggest impact for me is the fact I’m not able to drive. Getting around on buses with a pushchair or demanding toddler isn’t easy.
Many people just don’t understand or know enough about epilepsy So please get involved and create awareness in anyway you can whether you will be Perfect in purple. Marvellous in mauve. Lovely in lavender. Whatever your shade wear purple on 26 March for Purple Day. Spread the awareness by posting photos of you in purple on social media and then donating just £3 by texting PURPLE to 70500 or to donate £1 text PDay26 £1 to 70070 Every £1 that is raised will increase the amount of research than can be funded.
I will be sharing my story and my purple photos on March the 26th on social media and on the blog.