In this section, we look at some of the reasons why epilepsy can have an impact on learning. We also look at a range of support options, which may assist a person with epilepsy on their learning journey.
Most people living with epilepsy will not experience significant learning difficulties. However, some may experience learning difficulties related to the condition and its cause/s, such as underlying neurological disorders, genetic factors, or prior head trauma. Educational challenges may also be due to frequent seizures and/or anti-epileptic drugs. They could also be due to undiagnosed learning disabilities, which may or may not be related to living with epilepsy.
A person living with epilepsy may experience difficulties with:
- Memory (long and/or short term)
- Attention/concentration (e.g. due to post-seizure tiredness and/or medication)
- Visual and/or verbal learning
- Speech and language
- Reading, spelling, numeracy
- Motor ability (e.g. poor or slow handwriting)
- Psychosocial issues (self-esteem, motivation problems)
- Maintaining consistency in learning
- Behaviour (e.g. attention-seeking or withdrawal behaviour)