Seizure Disorders

Seizures occur when nerve cells in your body misfire. Types of seizures vary. Recurrent seizures from one of many chronic processes are considered epilepsy. However, seizures are not considered to be epilepsy if they occur only once or are correctable.

Signs and Symptoms

What Causes It?

Seizures are caused by hyperexcitable nerve cells in the brain (cerebral cortex) that fire abnormally. No one knows why this happens. The conditions listed below are associated with seizure activity.

What to Expect at Your Provider's Office

Precipitating events (for example, head trauma) and risk factors (for example, family or personal history of seizures) are important factors to be discussed with your provider. It is also important to note how you felt before and after the seizure. Your provider will do blood tests for baseline values and an electroencephalogram (EEG) to help in your diagnosis.

Treatment Options

The goal of therapy is to stop the seizures, to minimize adverse drug effects, to prevent recurrences, and to help you readjust to your home life and work environment after a seizure.

Drug Therapies

Your health care provider will most likely prescribe medication to help control your seizures (approximately 30 to 70 percent of people who have a seizure will have a second seizure within one year). You may need to try several medications before you find one that works for you.

Complementary and Alternative Therapies

Some mild seizures may be controlled by alternative therapies.

Nutrition Herbs
Herbs may be used as dried extracts (capsules, powders, teas), glycerites (glycerine extracts), or tinctures (alcohol extracts). Teas should be made with 1 tsp. of herb per cup of hot water. Steep covered 5 to 10 minutes for leaf or flowers; 10 to 20 minutes for roots. Drink 2 to 4 cups per day. The above herbs may be used singly or in combination as 1 cup tea three times per day or 30 to 60 drops tincture three times per day. In addition, use milk thistle (Silybum marianum) to protect the liver from effects of medications (70 to 210 mg three times per day).

There have been few studies examining the effectiveness of specific homeopathic remedies. Professional homeopaths, however, may recommend one or more of the following treatments for seizure disorders based on their knowledge and clinical experience. Before prescribing a remedy, homeopaths take into account a person's constitutional type. In homeopathic terms, a person's constitution is his or her physical, emotional, and intellectual makeup. An experienced homeopath assesses all of these factors when determining the most appropriate remedy for a particular individual. Physical Medicine
Chiropractic, osteopathic, or naturopathic manipulation may be helpful, especially in children or for seizures after head trauma.

Following Up

Determining the best dosage or drug combinations is an inexact science; your provider will monitor you until your seizures are under control.


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