Identifying the Warning Signs of a Seizure

Identifying the Warning Signs of a Seizure

Although they can be frightening to watch, most seizures stop on their own and cause minimal concerns. The problem is that people can sometimes injure themselves or develop medical emergencies during a seizure. For certain types of seizures, there are warning signs that a seizure is on the way. If you or your loved ones are prone to having seizures, identifying warning signs of a seizures can help you better deal with the situation.

Prodrome (Early Warning Signs)

People with generalized seizures also known as tonic-clonic seizures may experience the following symptoms a few hours or days before a seizure. They are for the most part emotional signals:

  • Mood swings
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Increased agitation and irritability
  • Depression
  • Lightheadedness
  • Headache
  • Trouble sleeping

Aura (Late Warning Signs)

People with partial seizures may experience the following signs seconds or minutes before the actual seizure:

  • Unusual smells, tastes, sounds, or sensations
  • Nausea
  • A Déjà vu feeling (you feel like you are experiencing something that has occurred before)
  • Intense fear and panic
  • ‘Pins and needles’ sensation in certain parts of your body
  • Jerky movements in of the arm, leg, or body
  • Weakness and falling to the ground

Identify the warning signs will help you get to a safe place and let someone know that is going on. It’s a good idea to maintain a seizure diary to keep track of what signs and symptoms occur in your case. You must especially note changes that may be due to medication changes and give this information to your doctor.

Bystanders are generally recommended to let the seizure happen and the 3Cs - stay Calm, Cushion the head of the individual with a pillow to prevent injury, and Call an ambulance if the seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes.

North Suffolk Neurology is a full-service Neurology, Headache Medicine, and Sleep Medicine practice consisting of dedicated, experienced staff dedicated to helping our patients and their families maintain and improve their health. To schedule an appointment, please call: (631) 364-9119.