Epilepsy or seizures are termed as neurological disorders in which nerve cells activity in the brain is disrupted resulting in a period of unusual behavior, loss of consciousness and sensations. It is reported that 1 in every 26 people in the USA is likely to develop a seizure disorder.
While a single seizure does not mean the person is suffering from epilepsy, two unprovoked consecutive seizures generally sign towards epilepsy. If you are experiencing mild symptoms, make sure you reach out to a specialist as indulging in different activities during a seizure can be dangerous. 80% of the seizures can be controlled with the right medications and surgery.
Who gets Epilepsy?
Epilepsy is termed as 4th most common neurological condition in the world with more than 65 million people getting affected by this condition worldwide. Approximately 200,000 new cases of seizures are reported every year with 3% more men being affected as compared to women. Epilepsy can affect a person belonging to any age group; however people below the age of two and above the age of 65 are most vulnerable to this condition.
There are no identifiable causes reported in a majority of people. However, the condition can be traced to a number of factors, which includes:
- Genetic influence: Some particular type of epilepsy that you experience runs in the family. In such a situation, certain genes are more sensitive than others and can thus trigger seizures.
- Brain conditions: There are various conditions that can cause damage to the brain in turn causing epilepsy. One of the leading causes of epilepsy in adults is the stroke.
- Head Trauma: If you have faced a car accident or have been a part of other traumatic injuries, there are high chances that you might suffer from strokes or epilepsy.
- Prenatal Injury: Unborn babies are often sensitive to brain damage caused by a variety of factors. Situations like poor nutrition, infection from the mother and oxygen deficiencies can cause brain damage, in turn leading to cerebral palsy or epilepsy.
Symptoms of Epilepsy
While the neurological problem can be represented by repetitive behavior, a doctor can best establish whether or not you are suffering from epilepsy.
- The person experiencing a seizure stiffen for few seconds to a minute.
- Uncontrollable Jerking of Arms and Legs.
- Temporary Confusion and Blurriness.
- Loss of Consciousness.
- Psychic Symptoms.
- Repetitive Blinking.
- Many Seizures in a Day.
When to see a Doctor?
You should seek an immediate medical help, if one of the following events occur:
- First Seizure Followed by Another One Immediately.
- You have Diabetes.
- Breathing Does Not Return Back to Normal After Stopping of The Seizure.
- The Seizure Lasts for 5 Minutes or More.
- You are Feeling Heat Exhaustion.
There are certain factors that may increase your risk of epilepsy. Some of the risk factors associated with epilepsy and strokes include:
- Family history: If epilepsy runs in your family, there are high chances that you may be at a risk of developing this neurological problem.
- Age: Age is considered as another risk factor for this neurological disorder as it can affect a person in early childhood and after the age of 60 years.
- Brain Infections: Neurological conditions or brain infection can increase your risk of attaining this condition.
- Head Injury: In some cases, head injuries are also responsible for causing epilepsy. To avoid such situation, make sure you wear a helmet while engaging in different activities that pose high risk of head injury.
Diagnosis of the Problem
The doctor can advise you one of the following ways to diagnosis your problem along with reviewing your symptoms and medical history. Some tests you may be advised to undergo are:
- Blood Tests.
- Neurological Examination and Tests.
- Electroencephalogram (EEG).
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).
- Computerized Tomography (CT) Scan.
You Are Not Alone
Epilepsy affects millions of people every year, therefore it is important to remember that you are not alone! Follow the appropriate medications and other steps toward healing to treat the problem completely.