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Seizures – Basic Info

Seizure is a medical term used to describe a sudden change ina behavior of a person, caused by the dysfunction of the brain. A personsuffering from a seizure can experience some repetitive movement, such assmacking the lips, unusual movement of the mouth, chewing or swallowing withoutany reason or even picking up the clothes. Nausea, sweating, flushed face, andvision problems, including changes in vision and dilated pupils can also accompanya seizure. These patients may suffer from some abnormal discomfort and/or pain,as well as from blackout, lack of awareness of the surrounding or even some suddenhalt in a conscious activity they were engaged before the seizure. Mood changes,fumbling of the hands and numbness and tingling sensations are some otherpossible symptoms of seizures.

Adults can experience either partial or generalizedseizures. The main difference between these types of seizures is the part ofthe brain affected by the problem.

Partial seizures affect neurons on one side of the brain,and they can be simple or complex. Simple seizure patients usually don’t loseany awareness, but experience hallucinations, twitching or numbness of the bodyand in most cases sweating. Complex partial seizures are characterized byautomatism and loss of awareness. Generalized seizures in adults affectcomplete brain. These seizures are also classified in several subtypes,including: absence (or “petit-mal”), myoclonic, atonic and tonic-clonicseizures.

How Can You Help

Seizures can happen without prior notice, and when thathappens you should know what to do. Try to help the person experiencing theseizure. First of all, give him/her some space to breathe, and move peoplearound him/her further away if possible. Place something soft under his/her headand loose the collar of the clothes. After the seizure has passed open his/herairways, and if the person needs – proceed with rescue breaths and chestcompression, while waiting for the ambulance.

What Causes Seizures in Adults

Age and genetic inheritance are important causes ofseizures. Elderly, especially those suffering from Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseasesor dementia are prone to seizures. Atherosclerosis of the arteries around thebrain can be the reason for seizures a person experiences. Inherited metabolicdisorders are also known to lead to seizures in adult people. Lack of magnesiumand calcium, as well as hypoglycemia and hepatic encephalopathy are some of thepotential causes of seizures.

Injuries of the head and the bleeding of the brain(subarachnoid hemorrhage) can provoke seizures, too.

Alcohol and heroine withdrawal symptoms may also bepresented as seizures in patients trying to quit these substances. Because ofthat, addicts are advised to seek for medical professional, to help them stopthe abuse.

Diseases, especially those related to the brain, such asepilepsy, meningitis or brain tumors, but also kidney failure are known tocause seizures.

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