Seizures are sudden and uncontrolled electrical disturbances in the brain. These disturbances can cause unusual sensations and behavior and loss of consciousness. The condition can affect people of all ages, but the symptoms may vary depending on the type of seizure the person is experiencing. While some seizures are harmless, others might end up being fatal. So, individuals must be aware of the disorder’s warning signs and visit a health expert if they occur.
Convulsions or uncontrolled, jerky movements are the most common symptom. These movements are usually seen in the arms and legs but can also affect the face, neck, and other body parts. The movements can be irregular or in rhythm and may last from a few seconds to a few minutes.
Loss of consciousness
During a seizure, the patient might become unresponsive to visual stimuli, appear dazed or confused, and stare blankly. In some cases, one might also fall to the ground unresponsive.
Seizures can, at times, lead to muscle stiffness or soreness. This symptom is more common in people experiencing grand mal seizures, also known as tonic-clonic seizures. Muscle stiffness might cause the person to fall to the ground.
Seizures may also lead to sensory disturbances, such as numbness and tingling in the upper and lower limbs and the face. In most instances, these sensations are accompanied by anxiety or fear.
Seizures can give rise to numerous abnormal behaviors. For instance, the person might develop habits like chewing, lip smacking, or repetitive movements. These behaviors might be brief or prolonged. Sometimes, abnormal behavior is accompanied by disorientation and confusion.
Loss of bladder or bowel control
Some patients might lose bowel and bladder control. This symptom is more common in children than adults.
An aura, or unusual sensation or feeling, usually signals the beginning of a seizure episode. Auras can occur in many forms, such as a strange smell or taste, a visual disturbance, or a déjà vu. Auras usually last for only a few seconds before the seizure occurs.
Sudden emotional changes
Seizures may cause sudden or abrupt changes in a person’s emotions or moods. These changes may be seen as irritability, anxiousness, and agitation for no apparent reason.
Loss of coordination
Seizures may cause a loss of coordination in some people. This may make walking, standing up, carrying things, or performing day-to-day activities difficult.
Confusion or disorientation
When a seizure occurs, a person may become disoriented or confused. They may forget what they were doing or where they were before the seizure.
Headache or migraine
Another warning sign of an impending seizure for some people is the occurrence of migraines or headaches.
Unusual smells or tastes
Some people might be able to smell unusual things, like burning rubber, or taste weird things, such as metal.
Seizures can give rise to visual changes. Some experience blurred vision, while others see lights flashing before them. One might also see things or shapes that aren’t there.
Fatigue or sleepiness
Seizures can cause people to feel tired or sleepy even when they have had a quality sleep just a little while ago.