What causes Epilepsy

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Causes of Epilepsy: Trauma, Genetics, and Developmental Factors

Identifying the Causes of Epilepsy

In some instances, the causes of epilepsy can be identified. However, for around two-thirds of children and half of the adults with epilepsy, the cause remains unknown.

Trauma-Induced Epilepsy

Epilepsy can be triggered by trauma to the brain. Causes include:

  • Brain tumours
  • Stroke
  • Dementia
  • Alcohol and drug abuse
  • Infection
  • Physical trauma to the head

These factors can disrupt the delicate balance of nerve signals in the brain, leading to epilepsy.

Susceptibility Based on Life Stages

While the exact cause may not always be clear, susceptibility to epilepsy can vary based on life stages:

  • Epilepsy is rarely caused by tumours in children.
  • Strokes and dementia are more common causes in older adults.

Genetic and Developmental Factors

Some individuals are born with epilepsy. While genetics can play a role, epilepsy can also result from brain trauma occurring before birth. Factors include:

  • Oxygen deprivation during the birthing process
  • Infections passed from mother to baby in the womb
  • Developmental issues with the brain during growth