Epilepsy can be controlled with modern treatment options in about 80% of people with epilepsy. In most cases, it cannot be prevented. Here are some ways that may help to prevent epilepsy or prevent worsening of seizures and keep them controlled if you have epilepsy.
Prevent head injuries: Some seizures are linked to head injuries. You can prevent head injuries during an accident by wearing seatbelts, bicycle or motorcycle helmets and by putting children in car seats.
Antenatal care: Abnormalities in fatal brain development can cause seizures. Most of these abnormalities cannot be prevented, but some can be prevented by good prenatal care including treatment of high blood pressure during pregnancy, treatment of infections during pregnancy and avoiding consumption of alcohol, street drugs etc.
Getting appropriate treatment: Some seizures may be caused by damage to the brain due to high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and infections. By early and appropriate treatment to control these conditions, one may be able to prevent brain damage that may in turn cause epilepsy.
Taking medications: In many cases of epilepsy, repeated seizures can be controlled by early and appropriate treatment. Experts say that it is important to begin treatment for epilepsy right away as delay in starting treatment makes it more difficult to control and treat. If you stop medications or change the dose without your doctor’s advice, it may precipitate seizures and become difficult to control. Taking medications as recommended (timing and dose) is essential to keep seizures controlled.
Avoiding triggers: In some people with epilepsy, some factors can trigger a seizure. Try to identify the particular behaviours, environments or physical and emotional signs that probably occur before the seizure. It can probably help to control the seizure by avoiding the trigger factor.
Recognise aura: Some people have an aura (a distinctive feeling or warning sign that a seizure is going to occur) that a seizure is going to occur. This may allow you to take precautions such as lie down to avoid falling. If you experience warning signs such as depression, irritability or headache, an extra dose of medication (with your doctor’s advice) may help avert an attack. In a type of seizure known as Jacksonian seizure, tightly squeezing the muscles in the region of the twitching muscles can stop the attack in some cases.
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