What are the Most Common Symptoms of Seizures?

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  • Written By: Ricky Andromeda
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 05 October 2019
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There are many types of seizures, including mild seizures, grand mal seizures, clonic and atonic seizures. Seizures are commonly experienced by those with epilepsy, but anyone can have a seizure. The symptoms of seizures vary, but there are usually clear stages that affect someone suffering a seizure. They usually include loss of muscle control, collapsing, convulsions and loss of bladder control. People experiencing seizures generally should not be touched unless there is a medical professional present to prevent further injury.

People with epilepsy experience many types and symptoms of seizures, depending on the situation and their medical condition. Epileptics can experience an epileptic response to such stimuli as flashing lights or simply have a seizure in response to chemical changes in their bodies. Epileptics most commonly experience six types of seizures: absence, grand mal, clonic, atonic, tonic and myoclonic.

Absence seizures involve fainting or passing out, with the sufferer temporarily losing consciousness. Grand mal seizures, sometimes called generalized tonic-clonic seizures, are "classic" seizures, with the sufferer falling to the ground and convulsing while unconscious. The grand mal seizure causes muscle rigidity and foaming spittle at the mouth. Atonic seizures render the epileptic limp, while tonic seizures render him stiff and rigid. Clonic and myoclonic seizures cause rigid, jerky movements in the patient.


In addition to full seizures, people can suffer partial seizures that do not include traditional signs of seizures, such as convulsing or loss of consciousness. Partial seizures affect a person for only a brief moment and may cause uncontrolled jerking movements, lip smacking, head tossing or grinding of teeth. Partial seizures may also cause temporary loss of memory. Partial seizures sometimes entail loss of motor functions or bladder control, without complete loss of consciousness. These symptoms of seizures can occur with frequency if not treated.

Seizures have distinct stages of development, with clear beginnings, middles and ends. In each stage, there are unique seizure symptoms that can signal a patient is about to have one or is nearly finished with one. In the beginning stage of a seizure, a person may feel stress, racing thoughts or even euphoria, in combination with a sense of deja vu, confusion or strange sensory perception. The person also may feel numbness, nausea or dizziness before more serious symptoms of seizures take effect. The middle stage of a seizure is when the common signs of seizures take place, such as loss of consciousness and muscle control, along with feelings of electric shock and blurred vision. The end of a seizure often is marked by confusion, poor communication skills and pain for a short period.

There many types and symptoms of seizures that affect epileptics. Of course, anybody can experience a seizure at any time, even without warning. Anytime a seizure is experienced, medical attention should be sought.


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