Epilepsy is a central nervous system (neurological) disorder that causes abnormal brain activity causing a burst of electrical activity called seizures. Epilepsy could affect male and female and usually occurs at any age but mainly during childhood or in people over 60. There are 8 different types of epileptic seizures that will be discussed in this article, but it is important to understand that seizures can affect patients in different ways depending on which part of the brain is involved. Unfortunately, epilepsy is often a chronic condition that is lifelong, but can slowly improve over time. The different types of epileptic seizures will be discussed below in details.

1. Simple partial (focal) seizure:

This type of seizure is often described as an epileptic seizure that affect a specific part of the brain, it could be located in the temporal or the frontal lobe. Symptoms include an unusual feeling of uncontrollable jerky movement but remain conscious and aware of their surrounding environment.

2. Complex partial seizure:

This form of seizure is very similar to the simple partial seizure described above. However, complex partial seizure involves a loss of consciousness, responsiveness, and awareness compared to the simple partial seizure.

3. Absence Seizures:

Absence seizures often occurs in young children than in adults, but it can still happen at any age. It involves a brief loss of awareness as well as a blank stare. Some people also experience a subtle body motion like eye blinking. This type of seizure is less obvious than the other ones and people can have them for years without even noticing it.

4. Tonic Seizures:

That type of seizure consists of an increase in muscle tone making the muscles stiffer. This muscle stiffness can cause the person to fall on their back.

5. Atonic Seizures:

Atonic seizure is the complete opposite of the tonic seizure that is discussed earlier. It involves a sudden loss in the muscle tone making them more relaxed. This type of seizure could make the patient collapse and fall.

6. Clonic Seizures:

They are associated with a rhythmic jerking muscle movement of the face, neck legs, and arms.

7. Myoclonic Seizures:

Myoclonic seizures consist of a sudden brief twitch of muscles. Patients react to this type of seizure as if they got hit by an electric shock.

8. Convulsive (tonic-clonic) Seizures:

This is the most common type of seizure; it is the combination of muscle stiffening and jerking. This type also involves a sudden loss of consciousness and loss of bladder control in some cases. If this tonic-clonic (convulsive) seizure lasts more than 5 minutes, then it is crucial to seek immediate medical treatment

Causes of epilepsy are often acquired than innate, but there could also be some genetic factors involved. The most common causes an epilepsy include an injury, a stroke, a brain tumor, a previous infection, or a birth defect.

Risk factors of epileptic seizures:

Epileptic seizures could be triggered by many environmental and behavioural factors. They are often associated with a significant change in the person’s daily routine. Example of these factors include emotional factors like stress and anxiety, excessive amount of alcohol intake or the process of alcohol withdrawal, drugs, a change in the sleep schedule, pregnancy and change in hormones, a change in the person’s daily medications. Flashing light, bright light, being very close to the TV, and certain colours like red and blue could significantly trigger people with a type of epilepsy called photosensitive epilepsy.

Prevention of epileptic seizures:

Although epilepsy is a chronic disorder and cannot be prevented, the seizure itself could be prevented by doing the following tips:

- Get an adequate amount of sleep by setting a good sleep routine.

- avoid drugs and alcohol.

- avoid bright and flashing lights.

- Have a healthy lifestyle including a healthy diet and a good workout routine.

- Reduce the use of electronics like video games and computer time.

- Manage your stress using meditation and relaxation techniques.

- If it is the case, take all the medications prescribed by your doctor as indicated.

Treatment of epileptic seizures:

One of the most effective treatments of epileptic seizures is with daily medication. The main class of medication used for seizures is the anti-convulsant medications. Other factors that are considered when prescribed a new anti-epileptic medication include the age, lifestyle, other conditions, and the category of the epilepsy. However, it is crucial to try to follow the tips above in order to prevent any seizure in the future.