February 26 2018 at 05:52 AM by Admin

Epilepsy is a chronic neurological disorder characterized by recurrent seizures. It involves an abnormal, disorderly discharging of the brain’s nerve cells, resulting in temporary disturbance of motor, sensory or mental function. However, seizures are only symptoms of this disorder and not every seizure is a result of epilepsy. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimated epilepsy to affect around 50million people worldwide. Epilepsy can begin at any age. Studies have not found a prime diagnosis time but the incidence rate is highest in children and older adults. Moreover, some children with seizures eventually grow out of them.Also, 1 in 26 of those diagnosed with this disorder experience recurring seizures.

Causes of Epilepsy

Some of the common causes of epilepsy include the following -

  • Genetic Influence - Researchers have linked some types of epilepsy to specific genes, but for most people, genes are only part of the cause of epilepsy. Certain genes may make a person more sensitive to environmental conditions that trigger seizures.
  • Head trauma - Head trauma as a result of a car accident or other traumatic injury can cause epilepsy.
  • Brain conditions. Brain conditions that cause damage to the brain, such as brain tumours or strokes, can cause epilepsy. Stroke is a leading cause of epilepsy in adults older than age 35.
  • Infectious Diseases. Infectious diseases, such as meningitis, AIDS and viral encephalitis, can cause epilepsy.
  • Prenatal injury. Before birth, babies are sensitive to brain damage that could be caused by several factors, such as an infection in the mother, poor nutrition or oxygen deficiencies. This brain damage can result in epilepsy or cerebral palsy.
  • Developmental Disorders. Epilepsy can sometimes be associated with developmental disorders, such as autism and neurofibromatosis.


Epilepsy is sometimes referred to as a long-term condition, as people often live with it for many years, or for life. Although generally epilepsy cannot be ‘cured’, for most people, seizures can be 'controlled' (stopped) so that epilepsy has little or no impact on their lives. So, treatment is often about managing seizures in the long-term. 

Most people with epilepsy take anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) to stop their seizures from happening. However, there are other treatment options for people whose seizures are not controlled by anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs).

Having epilepsy can have a huge impact on a person's wellbeing including their mood, sleep and relationships. However, there are ways you can improve your well-being such as exercise, diet and having a support network. Looking after your wellbeing can help you to reduce seizures and function better in your daily life.