Electrical activity running through nerve cells helps your brain tell your body what to do, but if abnormal signals interrupt the brain?s normal functioning you can have a seizure.
Herein, what are the symptoms after having a seizure?
The postictal state is the altered state of consciousness after an epileptic seizure. It usually lasts between 5 and 30 minutes, but sometimes longer in the case of larger or more severe seizures, and is characterized by drowsiness, confusion, nausea, hypertension, headache or migraine, and other disorienting symptoms.
Can a person die from a seizure?
When this happens to someone with epilepsy it may be called Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy (or SUDEP). SUDEP is when a person with epilepsy dies suddenly and where no other cause of death is found. It may be that they died during or after a seizure. In the UK around 600 people die from SUDEP each year.
Used with other drugs to treat partial or generalized tonic-clonic seizures. It is also used with absence seizures. Side effects include sleepiness, dizziness, speech problems, nervousness, memory problems, visions problems, weight loss.
Symptoms that indicate a seizure is in progress include:
- losing consciousness, which is followed by confusion.
- having uncontrollable muscle spasms.
- drooling or frothing at the mouth.
- having a strange taste in your mouth.
- clenching your teeth.
- biting your tongue.
- having sudden, rapid eye movements.
These seizures will generally last 1 to 3 minutes. If a tonic-clonic seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes requires medical attention. A seizure that lasts longer than 10 minutes, or three seizures without a normal period in between indicates a dangerous condition called convulsive status epilepticus.
The Central Nervous System. Naturally, this is one of the body systems greatly affected by epilepsy. The brain is a part of this system and it controls your body's voluntary and involuntary movements. Seizures are caused when abnormal electrical signals in the brain interrupt the brain's normal functioning.
One study found that generalized seizures appear to cause progressive brain dysfunction in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy. When seizure activity is markedly prolonged, as in status epilepticus, brain damage can occur quickly and be profound.
- Keep other people out of the way.
- Clear hard or sharp objects away.
- Don't try to hold your friend down or stop her movements.
- Place her on her side, to help keep her airway clear.
- Look at your watch at the start of the seizure, so you can time its length.
- Don't put anything in your friend's mouth.
Epilepsy is not contagious and is not caused by mental illness or mental retardation. Sometimes severe seizure can cause brain damage, but most seizures do not seem to have a detrimental effect on the brain. Epilepsy has many possible causes, from illness to brain damage to abnormal brain development.
An epileptic seizure is a brief episode of signs or symptoms due to abnormally excessive or synchronous neuronal activity in the brain. The outward effect can vary from uncontrolled jerking movement (tonic-clonic seizure) to as subtle as a momentary loss of awareness (absence seizure).
seizure triggers. Triggers are situations that can bring on a seizure in some people with epilepsy. Some people's seizures are brought on by certain situations. Triggers can differ from person to person, but common triggers include tiredness and lack of sleep, stress, alcohol, and not taking medication.
Seizure signs and symptoms may include:
- Temporary confusion.
- A staring spell.
- Uncontrollable jerking movements of the arms and legs.
- Loss of consciousness or awareness.
- Psychic symptoms such as fear, anxiety or deja vu.
For some people, sleep is disturbed not by dreams but by seizures. You can have a seizure while you sleep with any form of epilepsy. But with certain types of epilepsy, seizures only occur during sleep. The cells in your brain communicate to your muscles, nerves, and other areas of your brain via electrical signals.
Abdominal epilepsy, also known as autonomic epilepsy, is a rare condition most frequently found in children, consisting of gastrointestinal (GI) disturbances caused by epileptiform seizure activity. It has been described as a type of temporal lobe epilepsy. Responsiveness to anticonvulsants can aid in the diagnosis.
Fatigue. Sleepiness is common after a grand mal seizure. Severe headache. Headaches may occur after a grand mal seizure.
The clonic stage consists of rapid muscle contractions, sometimes called convulsions. Tonic-clonic seizures usually last 1–3 minutes. If the seizure lasts longer than five minutes, it's a medical emergency.
Seizures of all types are caused by disorganized and sudden electrical activity in the brain. Causes of seizures can include: Abnormal levels of sodium or glucose in the blood. Brain infection, including meningitis.
Electroencephalogram (EEG). This is the most common test used to diagnose epilepsy. In this test, doctors attach electrodes to your scalp with a paste-like substance. Your doctor may give you instructions to do something that will cause seizures, such as getting little sleep prior to the test.
Neurologists even have a name for it: Transient Epileptic Amnesia (TEA). Anticonvulsants, the drugs used to treat epilepsy, reduce the severity and frequency of seizures, but they can also impair normal brain functions and cause memory problems. The reasons why are not totally clear.
Here are some tips that may help reduce your risk of having an epilepsy seizure:
- Get plenty of sleep each night — set a regular sleep schedule, and stick to it.
- Learn stress management and relaxation techniques.
- Avoid drugs and alcohol.
- Take all of your medications as prescribed by your doctor.
Today, most epilepsy is treated with medication. Drugs do not cure epilepsy, but they can often control seizures very well. About 80% of people with epilepsy today have their seizures controlled by medication at least some of the time. Of course, that means that 20% of people with epilepsy are not helped by medication.
Anxiety and low mood may affect your epilepsy and how it is managed. You may be able to help break some of these links. Stress may lead to feeling that you can't cope, to anxiety or depression and to a higher risk of seizures. Complementary therapies that relax you may help to reduce the risk of seizures.