Keeping a “seizure diary” is often recommended as a means of helping to track your progress on a new medication or identify potential triggers. Often people write detailed narratives and then find that doctors don’t read them. Narratives can be of great personal benefit, as they may help you to learn about your own seizure patterns and improve ways of coping. On the other hand, charting specific things can help you track the severity and frequency of your seizures in relation to a number of factors. You can do it on paper or in your favorite software… Here is a list of what I chart:
- Hours slept
- Foods eaten
- Meds taken
- Emotional events
- Audio/visual stimuli
- Illness (e.g. cold
- exercise or unusual activities
- seizure time/description
Keeping track of these things can help you make decisions about lifestyle changes as well as when to talk with your doctor about medication adjustments. If you are uncertain whether some or all of your seizures may be nonepileptic in nature, charting can also help you in identifying psychogenic triggers.
Be as detailed as you like in filling it out. You can add additional things at any time and customize it to fit your own needs. Some people find it best, if they have mixed seizure types, to create a sheet with a chart of seizure types and list seizures on the date chart by the key. It’s all up to you!