People ask me this question regularly. Since November is Epilepsy Awareness Month, now is a good a time as any to answer the question again:
Epilepsy is a general term used for a group of disorders that cause disturbances in electrical signaling in the brain. The brain is a complex electrical system, powered by about 80 pulses of energy per second. These pulses move back and forth between nerve cells to create our thoughts, feelings, and memories.
An epileptic seizure occurs when these energy pulses come much more rapidly – as many as 500 per second – due to an electrical abnormality in the brain. This electrical surge can happen in just a small area of the brain, or it can affect the whole brain. Depending on the part of the brain that is affected, the surge of electrical energy can cause:
- Changes in a person’s sensations or state of consciousness.
- Uncontrolled movements of certain parts of the body or of the whole body.
So there you have it. According to most recent estimates, seizures and epilepsy will develop in 200,000 otherwise healthy Americans of all ages this year…. Crazy huh? Before Bradyn was diagnosed I knew nothing about this condition that impacts so many people. Epilepsy research is not going to get the funding it needs until we bring Epilepsy out of the shadows, start talking about it and make sure people everywhere know how serious it is. Can you help me spread the word?