National Epilepsy Day is marked on 17 November annually to create awareness about the medical issue. The day is also used for making people aware of the symptoms and treatment of the disease. Epilepsy is a non-communicable disease in which recurrent seizures occur due to the brain generating sudden, abnormal bursts of electrical energy.
Around 50 million people suffer from epilepsy globally according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Of the total number of people affected, about 80 percent live in developing countries, with over three-fourths of epilepsy patients not receiving adequate medical care in developing nations. In India, about 10 million suffer from epilepsy and the seizures associated with it.
Why is epilepsy caused?
The disease is caused due to a variety of factors such as brain infections, strokes and brain tumours, brain damage from prenatal and perinatal injury and congenital abnormalities. Epilepsy can also occur in any age group due to head injuries or a prolonged high fever during childhood.
As the country marks National Epilepsy Day today, here’s a look at what the symptoms of the medical issue are and how you can manage them:
Symptoms of Epilepsy:
― Loss of consciousness in the patient
― The feeling of stiffness in muscles of the face or the arms and legs. Some people may also experience a tingling sensation in their muscles
― Patients also experience sudden twitching or jerks in their arms and legs.
If you are experiencing an epileptic seizure, you can try the following tips to manage them:
― Take the medications prescribed for seizures.
― Consult the doctor if the medicines are not effective. Do not discontinue your medication without consulting your doctor.
― Avoid drinking alcohol as it leads to seizures.
If any person close to you is suffering from the disease, here is what you can do if they are suffering from a seizure:
― Do not panic or try to restrain the person suffering from a seizure.
― Remove any sharp or harmful objects from the vicinity of the person.
― Allow the patient to rest and put a pillow under their head.
― Be with the patient till medical help reaches.
― Roll the person gently to one side to ensure that any fluid in the mouth can come out safely.