Convulsions are sudden, involuntary, irregular contractions of the muscles that cause the body to rapidly shake. Someone experiencing a convulsion can temporarily lose consciousness and bowel/bladder control, stop breathing, and clench their teeth. Commonly associated with some seizure disorders, these convulsions are triggered by abnormal electrical activity in the brain. They can also be caused by toxins or abnormal amounts of other agents in the blood, as well as high fevers, withdrawal from drugs or alcohol, hypoglycemia, and head injury. Convulsions that are not seizure related may occur sometimes with fainting or with some psychiatric conditions. The best thing for anyone to do who is witnessing a convulsion is to try remove any objects nearby that pose a risk for injury, and to monitor their breathing and pulse. Never try to hold down someone who is having an active seizure or to place objects in their mouth, as this can unintentionally cause injury.

Convulsions that are prolonged require immediate medical attention. Convulsions may be a sign of a serious underlying neurological issue. They may cause injury, pose safety problems, and have negative effects on mental and physical wellbeing. Seek out a medical professional if you may be suffering the symptoms of convulsions.

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