Seizures Occurring in Water

In certain situations, a loss of consciousness is especially dangerous and emergency care must go beyond the routine procedures.  A seizure in water is a life-threatening situation.

First Aid for a Seizure Occurring in Water

  • Support the person in the water with the head tilted so the face and head stay above the surface
  • Remove the person from the water as soon as the active movements of the seizure have ceased
  • Check to see whether the person is breathing and whether they have a pulse. If they not breathing but have a pulse start CPR and immediately call 000. The operator will instruct you step by step while an ambulance is despatched
  • Even if the person appears to be fully recovered, call an ambulance. The person should have a full medical check as inhaling water can cause lung or heart damage

NB: If a seizure happens out of the water during a swimming activity, the person should not continue with swimming or water sports that day, even if the person appears to be fully recovered.

Click hyperlink to your First Aid Guide for When a Seizure Occurs in Water.

Information from the Epilepsy Australia webpage.