Today (26th March), the VIVA! team has popped on some purple to mark Purple Day 2021 and raise awareness of the 250,000 Australians living with epilepsy.
Started by 9-year-old, Cassidy Megan, Purple Day is a global initiative with the goal of encouraging discussions around the disease, increasing support for those affected, and providing a platform for people with epilepsy to connect with others around the world.
Epilepsy is a neurological disorder involving disruption to electrical activity in the brain, causing a person to experience spontaneous and recurrent seizures. The disease can take different forms, either by recurring convulsive or non-convulsive seizures. It can develop at any age, however it is more likely to be diagnosed in childhood or senior years. Common causes of the disease include head trauma, stroke, infectious diseases of the brain or birth abnormalities.
Alarmingly, 1 in 10 Australians living with epilepsy sustain serious, potentially life-threatening injuries each year, highlighting the need for effective management and strong support systems.
Majority of those living with epilepsy can effectively manage their condition with medication, with up to 70% of people ultimately becoming seizure free. However, for those for whom medication is not suitable, other treatment options include surgery, Vagus Nerve Stimulation, the Ketogenic Diet, Atkins Diet and Deep Brain Stimulation.
To mark Purple Day 2020, the VIVA! team partnered with UCB, Epilepsy Action Australia and Epilepsy Australia to launch Look for Epilepsy. The initiative aimed to help raise awareness of the disease and highlight the much-needed support available to those affected and their carers by urging Australians to take a selfie with a purple glasses filter on the website, share and tag.
For information on how to get involved and show your support this year, head to: https://www.epilepsy.org.au/fundraise/purple-day/