Epilepsy is a condition whenunwanted electric impulses are sent to the brain causing seizures. Theseseizures may be of different character; mild, when all that happens is a smallamount of time when a person is still and unaware of him or herself or hard,when seizures involve body contractions and convulsions. People suffering fromepilepsy can live without a seizure for most of their lives but it can alwayscome back when they least expect it. That is why it is dangerous and lifethreatening for them to drive or do any operations involving high risk iflosing control.
In order to be diagnosed withepilepsy, a person needs to have a seizure at least twice since if it onlyhappens once it may not be caused by this illness at all, and it may not repeatever again. If it does, however, the main reason in most cases is epilepsy.
At old age, epilepsy is mostoften caused by another underlying or previous illness such as a stroke ordementia. With younger people it can be caused by a head injury where nervoussystem had been damaged. Children suffering from Down syndrome or autism arealso known to be prone to this disease. It can also be caused while the childis still in the womb by the mother's infection or malnutrition. Epilepticseizures with children can often be attached to other mental, nervous ordevelopment disorders.
People suffering from epilepsyshould be extremely cautious while driving, swimming, doing any kind of sports,especially those extreme ones since there is a great risk of dying or seriousinjuries if a seizure happens at the exact time of practicing such activities.
Women who suffer from thisdisease and want children should ask for a medical advice since somemedications that are known to help suppressing seizures can also cause birthdefects. In most cases this is not so but it is better ruled out before beingtoo late.
Rarely, long lasting seizures mayappear continually. These are extremely dangerous and may even cause death.
Epilepsy can be triggered by manythings. Most often it appears with children and the elderly but there is not aspecific rule for that. If a person has suffered head injuries or any vascularor brain infections, he or she should medically check for any danger ofepilepsy. Also, statistically, men are more prone to it than women are and itcan often be genetically inherited and transferred as such.