Written by Seh Kah How

Symptoms of Epilepsy

Seizure signs and symptoms may include:

  • Temporary confusion
  • A staring spell
  • Uncontrollable jerking movements of the arms and legs
  • Loss of consciousness or awareness
  • Psychic symptoms such as fear and anxiety


Causes of Epilepsy

  • Genetic influence
  • Head trauma
  • Brain conditions
  • Infectious diseases
  • Prenatal injury
  • Developmental disorders

Risk Factors of Epilepsy

Certain factors may increase the risk of epilepsy:

  • Age
  • Family history
  • Head injuries
  • Stroke and other vascular diseases
  • Dementia
  • Brain infections
  • Seizures in childhood

Diagnosis Test of Epilepsy

Non-Drug therapies For Epilepsy

Diet Therapy

The ketogenic diet is an alternative therapy to medications. Diet is strictly supervised and prescribed with high fat and low carbohydrates with proteins (3:1 or 4:1) ratio by weight modified continuously under the supervision of nutritionist and physician based on the response towards the treatment.

Several studies have shown that the ketogenic diet does reduce or prevent seizures in many children. More than half of the children who try on the diet have at least a 50% reduction in the number of their seizures.

Calcium, vitamin D, iron, and folic acid are recommended as ketogenic diet does not provide all the vitamins and minerals that found in a balanced diet


How you can help if someone is have a seizure

Education About Seizure First Aid

Show others how to take care of someone having a seizure. Seizure First Aid is simple – Three Ss: Stay, Safe, Side.

  • STAY calm and Keep the person SAFE. Move harmful objects away from them.
  • STAY with the person and note the time the seizure starts.
  • Turn the person onto their SIDE if they are not awake and aware. Don’t block airway, cushion their head with soft objects and loosen tight clothes around neck.
  • Do NOT put anything in their mouth until the person is awake.
  • Do NOT restrain.
  • STAY with them until they are fully recovered and remained alert. Most seizures end in a few minutes.

When to Call 999

  • First time seizure
  • The seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes or last 2 minutes longer than is usual for them
  • Repeated seizures immediately with no recovery in between
  • Difficulty in breathing after the seizure has stopped
  • Seizure occurs in water
  • Person is injured, pregnant, or sick
  • Person does not return to their usual state


  1. Fisher RS et al. Epilepsia 2017; 58(4):531–542.
  2. Epilepsy foundation UK. Available from: https://www.epilepsysociety.org.uk/seizure-first-aid#.Xctz6NUzbIV [cited 2019 November 12]
  3. Yasam VR, Jakki SL, Senthil V, Jawahar N, et al. An Overview of Non-drug Therapies for the Treatment of Epilepsy
  4. Epilepsy Foundation of America. Available from: https://www.epilepsy.com/learn/professionals/refractory-seizures/actions-take/non-pharmacological-therapies [cited 2019 November 12]
  5. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER) © 1998-2019Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/epilepsy/symptoms-causes/syc-20350093 [cited 2019 November 12]