Tonic seizures are only one among many of types of seizures. Caused by abnormal electrical activity occurring throughout the brain, they involve brief stiffening of the body, typically where the person will lose consciousness. When their muscles rapidly tense, this may cause them to fall from a sitting or standing position. This is sometimes accompanied by a brief vocalization such as a moan or a scream, the result of air quickly being released from the lungs.
As the person recovers they may be confused with an absence of memory of the event, as well as experiencing physical and nervous exhaustion.
The best thing for anyone to do who is witnessing a seizure 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.
Seizures that are prolonged require immediate medical attention. Seizures may be a sign of a serious underlying neurological issue. They may cause injury, pose safety risks, and have negative effects on mental and physical wellbeing. Seek out a medical professional if you may be suffering the symptoms of a seizure.
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The Northwell Health Comprehensive Epilepsy Center is one of the largest and most comprehensive programs on Long Island for the evaluation, diagnosis and medical and surgical treatments of epilepsy.