Epilepsy is a central nervous system disorder that causes frequent seizures. Epilepsy affects the functions of the brain, resulting in losing a sense of balance and surroundings. People of any age can suffer from this, however, issues can vary from person to person. Every year, November 17 is observed as National Epilepsy Day in India to generate awareness about this chronic disorder characterized by recurrent fits.
On National Epilepsy Day 2022, here’s everything that you need to know about its facts, causes, and symptoms.
Although the root cause of the condition remains unclear, experts have identified several causes that can put a person at a higher risk of developing epilepsy.
- Brain abnormalities
Brain abnormalities can be developed due to pre-existing brain conditions including brain tumours, dementia, strokes, and more. These abnormalities can likely result in epilepsy in a few individuals.
Epilepsy is hereditary and can be inherited if you have a family history of the condition. Researchers have found certain evidence that certain kind genes can put a person at a higher risk of developing the problem.
- Mesial temporal sclerosis
Mesial temporal sclerosis is a type of scar that forms in the inner part of a temporal lobe this can give rise to focal seizures.
- Head injuries and brain disorders
Infections like meningitis, brain abscess, encephalitis, or head injuries caused by fatal falls and blows to the head can cause epilepsy.
- Autoimmune diseases
Autoimmune diseases that attack brain cells and affect the immune system of the body can put a person at risk of developing the condition.
- Development or metabolic disorders
People with metabolic disorders or birth abnormalities like tuberous sclerosis and polymicrogyria that affect the brain are frequent causes of epilepsy.
- The main symptom that a person with epilepsy faces is seizures. However, the symptoms of an episode depend on the type of seizure experienced by an individual.
- The most recurring symptoms include loss of awareness and consciousness temporarily, muscle jerks, uncontrolled muscle movements, blank stare looks, confusion, and problems with thinking, talking, and understanding.
- In addition to this, lack of vision, taste, smell, feelings, numbness, upset stomach, and goosebumps, are some of the other symptoms.
- The psychic symptoms of the condition include experiencing deja vu, anxiety, dreading, and feeling fear.
- Not every seizure can make a person shake and jerk, also people don’t always stay unconscious while experiencing a seizure.
- Approximately, one in every 100 people has epilepsy and around three per cent of people suffering from the condition have photosensitive epilepsy, meaning flashlights can trigger seizures in their body.
- According to a report by the Epilepsy society, a person suffering from tonic-clonic seizures should not be held down. In addition to this, they also shouldn’t be fed or made to drink anything during an episode.
- Every person is different and epilepsy affects people in different ways. For some people, the condition can affect their sleep and memory, for others, it can have an adverse effect on their mental health.