What is epilepsy? How do you develop it? What are the common symptoms? Are there different types of seizures?
Epilipsy is a central nervous system disorder in which brain activity becomes abnormal, causing seizures or periods of unusual behaviour, sensations, and sometimes loss of awareness. 65 million people are the world live with epilepsy, out of that 65 and estimated 3.4 million live in the US. And there are 150,000 new cases every year in the US. To learn more about what to do and not to do when someone is having an epileptic episode, follow this link.
Causes of Epilepsy:
There is no one thing that causes Epilepsy. Often times the cause is not known. However in some cases like:
- Brain tumor
- Traumatic brain injuries or head injuries
- Central nervous system infections
- Temporary confusion
- A Staring spell
- Uncontrollable jerking movements of the arms and legs
- Loss of consciousness or awareness
- Psychic symptoms like: fear, anxiety, or deja vu.
The different types of seizures:
There are six different types of seizures. These are generalized seizures, this means that they involve all areas of the brain.
Absence seizures: have previously been known as petit mal seizures. These often occur in small children and include staring off into space or subtle movements of the body like eye blinking or lip smacking. They occuss in clusters and cause a brief loss of awareness.
Tonic seizures: this type is characterized by stiffening muscles primarily in the arms, legs, and back
Atonic seizures: these seizures involve a loss of muscle tone and definition, ultimately leading to falls or inability to hold the head up.
Clonic seizures: these seizures involve repetitive jerking movements across both sides of the body.
Myclonic seizures: these seizures involve jerking or twitching movements occur in the arms, legs, or uper body.
Tonic-clonic seizures: Have previously been known as geand mal seizures, these are the most dramatic epileptic seizures. They can cause abrupt loss of consciousness, body stiffening and shaking. In some cases loss of bladder control or biting of the toungue can happpen.
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