Muscle contractions are the most well-known symptoms of epilepsy. Therefore, whoever goes through epileptic seizures totally loses control over their own bodies. People who see someone suffering an attack are usually startled and do not know how to react.
It is important to note, however, that the signs of this syndrome are not restricted to muscle retractions. Certain signs of epilepsy are so subtle that many people don’t even suspect the problem. Therefore, you need to be alert and seek medical attention after any suspicion that something is wrong.
According to the World Health Organization, epilepsy affects up to 1% of the population worldwide. In several cases it appears in childhood or adolescence. The sooner it is treated, the greater the chances of control. In this post, we cover epilepsy, its causes, symptoms, treatment and other aspects. Read!
What is epilepsy and what causes it?
Epilepsy is a change in the brain in which nerve cells start to act irregularly and intensely. This type of syndrome manifests itself through repeated epileptic seizures, resulting from the interruption of regular brain function.
For this reason, when the patient goes into crisis, he is subject to involuntary manifestations in consciousness, in the domain of muscles, in behavior and sensitivity. Such symptoms of epilepsy, however, are temporary and reversible.
The causes of the problem are not always easy to identify. It is known that it can arise from setbacks that occurred before, during or after childbirth. The syndrome is also related to trauma to the brain, caused due to infection, excessive use of drugs and alcoholic beverages or even a strong blow to the head, for example.
What are the symptoms of epilepsy?
Epilepsy symptoms appear in different ways. Continue reading and understand!
It is a short-term crisis, so it often goes unnoticed. Anyone who suffers from it will stare and lose their relationship with the environment and people for a few seconds.
Convulsive or epileptic attack
These are the most well-known symptoms of epilepsy. The patient in an epileptic or convulsive attack has muscle contractions throughout the body, which causes falls to the floor. It is also possible to observe marked salivation, tongue biting and wheezing. Some people even urinate.
Complex partial crisis
In a complex partial crisis, the patient seems to be alert, but has no control over his own body. Therefore, he makes automatic involuntary movements, that is, he walks without direction, chews uninterruptedly or speaks unintelligibly, for example.
Unusual perceptions and mental confusion
In certain cases, the person in epileptic seizure does not have contractions or show automatic movements, but still falls. Momentary changes in memory and unusual auditory and visual perceptions are also observed . The attack can even cause hallucinations.
How to help people with epileptic seizures?
Check out what are the measures to be taken to help the patient during an epileptic attack:
- keep it on its side and place a support under your head to avoid injury;
- leave the face in the lateral position to eliminate excess saliva and prevent choking and choking;
- remove objects close to the person, as well as accessories such as watches, glasses, earrings and bracelets. This prevents her from getting hurt;
- loosen the individual’s clothes;
- allow the person to struggle. If you try to hold it, you are both at risk of getting hurt;
- never put anything in the patient’s mouth. His tongue will return to normal when the attack is over. Any damage to the organ will be healed later.
If the attack lasts less than five minutes and the patient is epileptic, there is no need to take him to the doctor, unless he has diabetes or is pregnant. In other situations, the specialist must be promptly sought after the occurrence.
How to treat and prevent epileptic seizures?
The symptoms of epilepsy are combated with the prescription of anticonvulsant drugs, which prevent the abnormal functioning of brain activity in at least two thirds of cases . The dosage and duration of treatment must be defined by the doctor, according to the type of crisis.
There are situations in which the use of medicines is eternal. Regardless, it is necessary to follow medical guidelines to prevent the onset of attacks and have a better quality of life. Likewise, regular visits to the doctor’s office are usually recommended for proper follow-up.
It is important to highlight that the adoption of healthy habits is fundamental to the success of the treatment. So, if you want to get rid of epileptic seizures, pay attention to the following tips:
- get enough hours of sleep to rest your body and mind;
- eat in a balanced way and at regular times;
- do not abuse alcohol;
- practice physical activities regularly;
- if possible, do meditation or resort to acupuncture. As they provide relaxation for the body, they help control crises.
Patients in severe stage, whose epileptic attacks occur frequently and are uncontrollable, can also opt for surgery , if the neurologist so recommends. The procedure is performed in certain surgical centers in Brazil and has the approval of the Ministry of Health.
The intervention consists of removing the epileptic focus, that is, the region that causes the crises. However, surgical practice should only be performed if the affected area is small and localized, so that the overall functioning of the brain is preserved. When the syndrome reaches both brain hemispheres, surgery cannot be performed.
Now you know what are the symptoms of epilepsy and what to do to avoid them. This type of syndrome has no cure, but those who follow the treatment to the letter can enjoy its excellent results. So, be sure to see a doctor if you suffer from seizures.