Epilepsy Health

Stress & Seizures

A Sampling from Chapter 4

Stress can lead to drastic changes in the body, which can trigger seizures.

Stress can be caused by overwork, inactivity, trying to achieve perfection, dissatisfaction with others, worry, fear, anger, not enough sleep, eating too much of the wrong foods, not eating enough, pressure for time or money, tense situations in family or work.

When stressors aggravate us to a certain point (our threshold) the central nervous system says, "Enough is enough!" The result could be a headache, backache, heartburn, migraine, arthritis pain - or for those vulnerable to seizures, a seizure.

Even though the brain may be misfiring all the time, we don't have seizures 24 hours a day. Some ways to relax so that the central nervous system doesn't have to say, "Enough is enough!" are:

A general guide for keeping yourself relaxed

  1. Stop many times each day, wherever you may be; breathe deeply. Let your shoulders and tongue drop; relax your jaw. Make positive statements to yourself.
  2. Once or twice each day find a place to relax for a more extended period of 15 to 20 minutes. It can be any one or any combination of the methods described in this chapter, which are deep breathing, yoga asanas, meditation, progressive relaxation, autogenic phrases and positive thinking.
  3. Record in a journal the number of hours you sleep each night. Later, see if there is any correlation between seizures and how many hours you have slept the night before. Stress management is especially important when you haven't had enough sleep.
"I heartily recommend this important book to my patients and to anyone affected by epilepsy."

- Sydney J. Kurn
MD, Neurology