What Are Seizure Triggers?
“As a parent, if you let LGS control your life, it will consume you. You can empower yourself by learning more about LGS and asking questions like, ‘What triggers seizures in my child? What helps or decreases them?’ ”
Dale, father of teenage son Adam
For some people with epilepsy, certain situations or activities can make having a seizure more likely. These are called seizure triggers.
Not everyone with epilepsy has seizure triggers. Yet, for those who do, triggers can vary widely. What triggers a seizure in one person may not affect another.
Some of these triggers impact or reflect what’s going on inside the body and may include a lack of sleep or being tired, not eating well or missing meals, having a fever or being sick, or feeling stressed or anxious. Changes in hormone levels, such as during a woman’s menstrual cycle, may also trigger seizures.
Other triggers may be situations or activities that are happening outside of the body, in the environment. These types of triggers include:
- Flashing, bright lights or patterns such as from the TV or video games
- Smells or odors
- Certain sounds and loud noises
- Heat and humidity
Some people have also reported that activities such as reading, thinking, writing, consuming caffeine, or drinking alcohol, can also trigger seizures.
If you think your family member has seizure triggers or if you want to learn more about triggers, please talk with your doctor.