I’ve lived with epilepsy for over 5 years now, giving me a lot of time to learn about the condition, time to learn my triggers, understand my seizure patterns and frequency.
Over time, more triggers (a cause of seizures) made their way onto my list, as if my epilepsy were growing like a thorny flower of sorts; limiting caffeine, getting plenty of sleep, eliminating stress as much as possible, among other things. As the seasons changed, seizures would also come knocking at my door.
At first, I didn’t think much of it, just that my brain was doing what it now was accustomed to doing… Seizing. But one thing began to stick out over the years, seizure activity was more prominent on a hot and blistery day more than any other time. With curiosity growing alongside my trigger list, I began searching to see if there was a connection between things like weather change and seizures. What I discovered surprisingly, a lot of people blogged the question, having similar experiences such as mine, but there weren’t many concrete answers from medical professionals or organizations.
I called and spoke with my doctor to ask him about this occurrence and he informed me that he himself wasn’t even quite sure but that it wouldn’t be impossible, explaining that any sort of extreme or lengthy ‘change’ could trigger a seizure especially in those with Epilepsy. Since that discussion and discovering that others are talking about this similar experience, like going to battle, every season change, I do all in my power to prepare for the change in weather, temperature and season.
In winter, I clothe myself in proper attire to keep warm. Winter also has a tenancy to make me feel more tired than usual so I keep up with good sleep and vitamins such as Vitamin C and Vitamin D, due to lack of sunlight and warmth.
In summer, I clothe myself in proper attire to keep cool. Sometimes even going to the lengths of cutting my hair short since my hair is thick and causes discomfort in hot weather. Water is an extreme necessity in summer as well. Keeping hydrated is key to taking good care of yourself if you find yourself vulnerable to seizures in weather changes.
Mapping out what you should and shouldn’t do within the different seasons, weather changes and temperature differences makes a huge impact on seizure activity. Of course, its not a solid cure or prevention but taking precautions can prepare you for the changes. Keep a “Do and Don’t” list if possible; even keep a “Season Trigger” list.
Further study is definitely needed on this matter. However, until such time, preparation is what we can do to help ourselves or our loved ones. I’m encouraged to know that I am not the only one experiencing these triggers. Perhaps enough of our voices can lead to doctors looking into this and giving further explanation for us to learn from and understand. Further explanation for us to learn from and understand.
The Epilepsy Network (TEN)