In today’s world, there are rising cases of epilepsy in various countries. This is nothing but the seizures which a person gets over the repeated period of time. This is another type of neurological disorder which is the result of disturbed brain activity that causes changes in attention and behavior.
Normally, epilepsy seizures are the result of excessive, abnormal or hypersynchronous neuronal activity in the brain. In most of the cases, the cause can’t be identified. Though, the factors which can be associated with it includes stokes, brain cancer, brain trauma, alcohol misuse and other. This could be controlled through medication but can’t be cured.
There is not a fixed defined symptom as it may vary from person to person. Some may get simple staring spells whereas others may have violent shaking or loss of alertness. This basically depends on the part of the brain what is affected and results in epilepsy.
In many cases, the seizures are similar to the previous ones. Some have the strange sensation as in a smell of an odor which isn’t there actually, emotional change and all. This is known as an aura. There could be three types of seizures; absence seizure, generalized seizures and partial seizures. Let’s see their symptoms in details.
An absence seizure, also known as petit mal, lasts for only a few seconds. Their episodes may have the following:
1) May occur several times a day
2) Mistaken for lack of attention or other misbehavior
3) Occur for weeks to months before being noticed.
When a person is getting the absence seizures, he/she may:
1) Stop walking and resume it again after a few seconds
2) Stop in the mid-sentence and would start the talk again.
After a seizure, the person would usually be:
1) Wide awake
2) Unaware of the seizure
3) Think undoubtedly
There are some special symptoms of this type of seizures. They include:
1) Change in alertness
2) Change in muscle movement activity
Those who get the generalized seizures have a vision, smell, sensory changes, hallucination and even dizziness prior to the seizures. These seizures often involve muscle rigidity which is followed by the violent muscle contractions and loss of consciousness. Apart from this, other symptoms may include:
1) Skin getting blue
2) Loss of urine or stool
3) Clenched teeth or jaw
4) Difficulty or stopped breathing
5) Biting the cheek or tongue.
Soon after the seizure, the person may have:
3) Loss of memory or amnesia regarding the seizures episode
4) Sleepiness which may last for an hour or longer
5) Normal breathing
6) Weakness on one side of the body which may last from few minutes to a few hours
In a partial seizure, which is also known as focal seizures, a patient may the symptoms depending on the part of the brain which is affected. In this seizure, the person doesn’t lose the consciousness and is aware about the events which have occurred at the time.
The symptoms may be:
1) Abnormal muscle contraction
2) Forced turning eyes
3) Starting spells with or without complex and repetitive movements
4) Abnormal sensations
5) Abdominal pain or discomfort
7) Facial flushing
8) Rapid heart beats
10) Changes in vision
11) Sensation of déjà vu
12) Blackout spells
13) Changes in mood or emotions
There are two ways epilepsy can be treated; surgery and medication. This can work if the epilepsy is due to the abnormal blood vessels, bleeding in the brain, a tumor and others. The medication, which is called as anticonvulsants, may help to reduce the number of future seizures. These drugs may have birth defects. In such cases, a woman who wishes to conceive should speak to the doctor regarding it.
The dosage of the medication can be changed from time to time. For that, one might have to go regular blood test in order to check the side effects. These medications should be taken under the guidance of the doctor. If the medications failed, then the surgery is done. This is done to remove the abnormal brain cells which are causing seizures. In some cases, one can put on a special diet just to prevent seizures.
Brains monitor the actions of our body so it is necessary that whenever a person is getting epilepsy seizures he/she takes an immediate action to treat it. The delay could be harmful to them. So, meet your doctor if you’ve anyone of the above symptoms.