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Reduce Stress Causing Seizures

Stress causing seizures can be misleading to some. It is the impact that stress has on the body that is the problem.

Here are some basics of how the stress response functions. The “fight or flight” response IS the stress response. This is an automatic alert system that is part of our brain, and when triggered it effects every part of the body.

So, in relationship to a seizure, stress creates an increase in the electrical functioning of the brain and nervous system. People that are susceptible to seizures can be impacted by this increased firing of neuron activity.

The body also responds to an activated stress response by releasing an array of stress hormones.

Stress increases the release of a hormone called cortisol which can also impact seizure activity.

Emotional stress and seizures

Stress can also affect an area called the limbic system of the brain. This area regulates emotions, and is where seizures often start.

Seizure activity can increase with prolonged or chronic emotional stress.

Becoming more aware of the physiologic balance in our body is important.

Stress And Seizures Balance

Each person carries their own wisdom for what is needed to avoid chronic stress…or, living in a chronic out of balance lifestyle.

Stress And Seizures out of balance

It is the cumulative effect of physiological stress that impacts ones ability to cope with emotional stress:

  • Symptoms of anxiety
  • Symptoms of depression
  • Panic attacks
  • Feel angry more of the time
  • Moody
  • Irritable
  • Can’t seem to relax
  • feel frustrated most of the time
For those who are impacted by seizures, coping with stress is an important part of a daily wellness plan.

Seizure signs

While no one can fully predict what your signs of seizures will be, they can cause involuntary changes in body movement or function, sensation, awareness, or behavior.

Many people have shared what their warning signs were prior to having their seizure:

tightening of the chest
a rapid heartbeat
things in slow-motion just prior to the seizure

Causes of seizures

There remains much that is yet unknown about the onset of a seizure. In addition to emotional stress causing seizures, here are some other common causes:
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Brain injury
  • Drug toxicity
  • Infection
  • Fever
  • Hemorrhage
  • Tumor
  • Stroke

Seizure treatments

If you have found that seizures are more frequent with stress, it is very important to learn some new coping with stress strategies to minimize its impact on your body.

Learning a meditation technique that works for you or other stress relaxation techniques will be important. For any of us, invoking the relaxation response…giving our body more opportunities to be in balance and to rest and rejuvenate is important to overall health and wellbeing.

But, if you are concerned about ways to reduce stress ways to reduce stress and manage your seizures, then integrating a stress management program that fits best into your life may help to minimize the impact of a seizure and lesson its duration.

Stress causing seizures is an area that you CAN gain more control over.

Share Your Stress Tips, or Ask Your Question

There is so much to learn and understand about how the stress response works. If you have a question related to the fight or flight response, or the relaxation response, please ask them here.

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What Other Visitors Have Said

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Stress seizures Not rated yet
I was diagnosed with a brain tumor and temporal lobe epilepsy. I had a temporal lobe resection (the piece of my brain causing the epileptic seizures …

Grief over the loss of my spouse causing seizure Not rated yet
I lost my husband about 3 weeks ago. Having been together almost 26 years, since I was 16. I do not know how to live without him. Going from my parents …

Dealing with lonliness. Not rated yet
I am dealing with the loss of my husband. He passed away two years ago from cancer and I developed stress seizures because of the stress of the situation …

Dealing with lonliness. Not rated yet
I am dealing with the loss of my husband. He passed away two years ago from cancer and I developed stress seizures because of the stress of the situation …

Stress and seizures? Not rated yet
I have a friend who has started to have seizures. The doctors say that she is fine and that the stress in her life is probably the cause. Can you tell …

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I have been having some trouble with seizures. I've never had any problems with them before and now my doctor is saying they could be related to the …

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“Ms. Churchill is the unique health care worker everyone hopes to encounter, but rarely does. She has an extraordinary gift that allows her to do much more than diagnose and treat.”
Abbie K. – Minneapolis

K., age 45, is a long term chronically PTSD disabled patient. She has had daily headaches for 20 years. Two weeks ago she reported that she had had 4 days of pain free time, and was having the exceedingly odd sensation of "smiling all the time". She and Cathi have made extraordinary fast progress together.
Dr. Cole

I referred C.L., age mid-forties, to see Cathi after a life of suffering the post traumatic stress disorder of parental sexual abuse over many years of her childhood, with major dysfunctions of alcohol and drug abuse, and with the disabling symptoms of migraine that have for more than twenty years become chronic.

She has lived with daily headaches that have not responded to any of the several drugs which have benefited many such suffering patients. She has needed chronic opiate treatment of her chronic pain syndrome.

In the few weeks that Cathi has worked with her, C.L. has begun to experience days without pain, periods of happiness, and a reduction in her opiate dosage requirements that represent a breakthrough in her stalled-out life as a single mom raising a teen-age daughter with only social security income resources.
Dr. Racer

“I first met Cathi Churchill eight years ago when she effectively helped my work unit through the stress of a hospital-wide layoff. I was impressed with her clear-minded approach and willingness to listen.”
Andy R.

N., age 60, is a hard driving attorney twenty year patient of mine who hit the wall with chronic fatigue four years ago, and began to realize she had to learn to rest. She recovered enough to return to her workaholic lifestyle when she was stopped by a herniated cervical disc and resumption of her chronic colitis.

Working with Cathi, she is discovering "the way she does life" and learning to make choices about it. She came in last week, having "danced until dawn". She is learning to dialogue with her body in effective ways.
Dr. Cole

“I stumbled upon Cathi after my recent heart attack that was brought on by stress. I was scared of having another one, and didn’t know what to do. I had lost hope. Working with her has changed my life. I’m so grateful."
Debbie – Canada

M.S., a woman in her late forties with progressively more and more disabling rheumatoid arthritis since childhood, whose most recent problems have arisen over the last two to three years as complications of immunosuppressive therapy for her disease. The complications have been associated with the severely disabling chronic pain of recurrent herpes neuralgia for more than three years, and for the past 15 months, recurrent osteomyelitis in her right lower mandible.

The second, more alarming (even life-threatening) problem has caused months of diagnostic and therapy confusion among her many consultants, three successive resections of the bone over the last six to eight months, and the still ongoing threat of more relapses of the smoldering bone infection and chronic pain only made bearable by chronic, massive doses of opiates.

In the few months since M. began to work with Cathi with several modalities: stress management, therapeutic touch, guided imaging, and others, her life has become more livable, as she has become able to bear the pain and the discouragement of unresolved disease.

She has relied on many of the methods for maintaining hope and getting through overwhelming discouragement by using the inner resources she has learned with Cathi.

My hope as her primary physician, is that Cathi and M. will be able to continue to work together to maintain that inner strength and hope as she faces yet more months of pain, and further repeated surgery.

Thank you for the healing guidance you've been able to give her thus far.
Dr. Racer

“I sought out the help of Cathi during my divorce, and found her to be an insightful and compassionate coach. Her ability to see deep into the heart of an emotionally stressful problem is, I believe, unique and I would highly recommend her service to anyone.”
P.R. – Brooklyn Center

S., age 48, is a Laotian patient of mine with 15 years of chronic abdominal pain. She has had an extensive medical worked up, and nothing ever worked. Cathi saw her over several months.

S. has improved! Cathi established a trusting relationship with her, and helped her to effectively break through her wall of silence and grief about her son's mental illness, and taught her how to "change her thinking".

S. now comes in smiling, notes some unusual continued symptoms, but no longer has chronic abdominal disabling pain.
Dr. Cole

“Control My Stress is so amazing. I want to thank you, again, for such a valuable resource.”

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