Can seizure disorders be prevented?

In some cases, seizure disorders, also known as epilepsy, can be prevented. Because epilepsy can be caused by traumatic brain injury, taking steps to protect your brain from injury can help prevent epilepsy. This can involve something as simple as wearing a seatbelt every time you are in a car or something as complex as wearing special protective gear if you are in a situation that increases your risk of brain injury. Decreasing your chances of getting illnesses that impact the brain, such as brain infections, can also help. For example, you can make sure you are up to date on all recommended vaccinations. Trying to reduce your risk of stroke can help prevent epilepsy as well. This may involve quitting smoking and lowering your cholesterol, for example. Sometimes, people who already have had one or two seizures can prevent further seizures from occurring by taking medication. In many cases, however, epilepsy simply cannot be prevented. In over half the people who have this neurological disorder, the cause is unknown.

Seizures can be prevented or controlled by taking daily medications, known as anti-epileptics, avoiding certain triggers (like sleep deprivation)and by following your doctor's recommendations.

Some patients may be seizure free for long periods of time (years) and only have a seizure, if they forget to take their medication, or if they are ill. Others may have more frequent seizure episodes despite taking their medications correctly.

Unfortunately, a seizure disorder cannot be predicted, and therefore, cannot be prevented. However there are certain risk factors, which are associated with increased odds of developing a seizure disorder. These include moderate to severe head injury, ischemic or hemorrhagic strokes, brain tumors, and central nervous system infections.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.