Epilepsy is a disease or ...
The term "epilepsy" means not one, but a group of diseases (if more than 60) with different clinical manifestations and different outcomes. There are mild forms of epilepsy that go away on their own and do not cause any inconvenience to the person, but there are also severe forms that lead to severe seizures and cannot be treated.
Epilepsy most often manifests itself in childhood and adolescence. Also, epilepsy affects people who have suffered severe trauma, concussion, stroke, as well as those who have vascular pathology. The disease most often occurs in young children and the elderly.
A genetic predisposition to seizures can also cause epileptic seizures, which in turn can lead to epilepsy.
A few facts about epilepsy that you might not know
1. Epilepsy is diagnosed when at least two seizures have occurred. In a single episode of seizure, epilepsy is not a diagnosis.
2. Epilepsy is not a contraindication to pregnancy. In some cases, pregnancy can reduce the number of attacks. However, pregnancy with epilepsy must be planned and medication selected so as not to harm the fetus.
3. With an epileptic seizure, when a person has seizures, he must first be put on a surface and then turned on his side. There is no need to put any objects in your mouth. Make sure that the person does not get hurt or hit their head if they have a seizure. Time the seizure duration.
4. An interesting observation of scientists was the fact that Mozart's music can reduce the frequency of epileptic seizures.
5. In 70% of cases, the exact cause of epilepsy cannot be identified.
6. In 1 out of 20 people suffering from epilepsy, a seizure can cause flickering of light.
Why an epileptic seizure occurs?
As a result of synchronous excitation of nerve cells in an epileptogenic focus (a region of the brain where epileptic activity is manifested), an epileptic seizure occurs.
Types of epilepsy
Specialists distinguish between generalized and focal seizures.
What are the manifestations of epilepsy?
The manifestations of epilepsy are not always the same as shown in the films. In the mind of an ordinary person, epileptic seizures look like uncontrollable convulsions and foam at the mouth, which ends in loss of consciousness. Epileptic seizures not always may look like this.
How else can epilepsy manifest itself:
• Inappropriate behavior, which is manifested by ignoring others and referring to a person;
• Impaired consciousness for 10-30 seconds;
• Glassy gaze without any activity;
• Twitching of arms and legs.
These seizures are called absence seizures. Their number can reach from tens to hundreds of times a day.
Manifestation of nocturnal seizures of epilepsy:
• tension in various parts of the body, adopting an unusual posture, twisting of the mouth;
• a person may wake up, but cannot say anything (consciousness at this time may be clear);
Today there is such a thing as a benign epileptic syndrome. This is a type of epilepsy that does not affect personal development and can also go away on its own even without treatment. Attacks disturb for some time and disappear. A benign epileptic syndrome occurs only in children. In any case, the degree of the disease should be determined by the doctor and the appropriate treatment should be prescribed. You cannot ignore the seizures.
Where to go first if a child or adult has suspected epilepsy
A neurologist or epileptologist deals with problems with epilepsy. What tests can be prescribed:
• electroencephalographic examination;
• magnetic resonance imaging (to identify the cause of seizures);
• neuropsychological test will help to reveal in which part of the brain epic activity is manifested.
How you can reduce your epileptic seizures or get rid of the disease altogether
There are two types of treatment: medical and surgical. In the first, drugs are prescribed, in the second, the part of the brain that causes epileptic seizures is surgically removed. The doctor may first try to eliminate or slow down the course of the disease with the help of medications.
It should be said right away that there are types of epilepsy that cannot be treated. In this case, with the help of drugs, you can only reduce the frequency of their occurrence. At the same time, other types of epilepsy respond well to treatment up to the complete disappearance of epileptic seizures. That’s why it is really important that the doctor must selects an individualized treatment according to the diagnosis.
There are also some restrictions for people who have one or another type of epilepsy. For example, in some types of epilepsy, seizures can be triggered by a bright flash of light (even from a TV or camera), in other types of epilepsy, seizures appear from severe emotional stress. Now you understand why an accurate diagnosis is important.
Anticonvulsants, or antiepileptic drugs, are prescribed for treatment. For each person, his drug regimen is determined, one drug helps some patients, and a combination of them helps others. If your doctor has already prescribed a drug, you can find it in the Anti Convulsants section.
Things not to do while taking medication
1. Do not stop taking the drug abruptly unless directed by your doctor.
2. It is not recommended to change the drug without the instructions of your doctor.
3. Do not increase or decrease the dosage and dosage regimen. If you have any adverse reactions, contact your healthcare professional.
Antiepileptic drugs can cause depression, if you feel a change in mood, depressive or suicidal thoughts, contact your doctor. You should also contact your doctor if you find a rash, migraine. According to statistics, most of all the patients who applied felt a significant decrease in the frequency of epileptic seizures, about half of those who applied and completely get rid of the seizures.