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Epilepsy refers to a chronic condition in which repeated fits or attacks of unconsciousness occur with or without confusions. It is a serious disorder of a central nervous system. It occurs in both children and adults. Most attacks, however, occur in childhood and in early adult life. Attack rates show a progressive decline in frequency with age.
Epilepsy is recognized by recurrent sudden attacks at irregular intervals. The patients twitch convulsively and fall unconscious to the ground during these attacks which cause tremendous nervous unheavel. There are two main types of epilepsy known as petit mal and grand mal. Each follows its own specific pattern.
In petit mal, which is a less serious form of epilepsy, an attack comes and goes within a few seconds. The patient has a momentary loss of consciousness, with no convulsions except sometimes a slight rifidity, or there may be slight attack of convulsions such as a jerk, or movement of the eyes, head trunk or extremities, with no perceptible loss of consciousness. The patient may not fall. He may suddenly stop what he is doing and then resume it when the attack is over, without even being aware of what has happened. Petit mal attacks may occur at any time in life but are most frequent in children.
The attack in case of grand mal comes with a dramatic effect. There are violent contractions of the arms, legs and body, accompanied by a sudden loss of consciousness. Before the onset of an attack, some patients have a warning or aura in the form of strange sensations such as a current of air or a stream of water flowing over a body, noises, odors and flashes of light. In a typical attack, the patient cries out, falls to the ground loses consciousness and develops convulsions. With the convulsions may come foaming at the mouth, twitching of the muscles, biting of the tongue, distorted fixation of limbs, rotation of the head and deviation of the eyes. The patient may lose control of his urine and faeces. The attack may last several minutes and is usually followed by a deep sleep. On waking up, he may remember nothing of what happened to him.
People who suffer from epilepsy are not abnormal in any other way. They usually know that fits can be triggered off by particular stimuli. Between epileptic attacks, their brain functions normally.
In the natural form of treatment, the sufferer from epilepsy has to follow a rigorous regimen consisting of a strict dietary, complete relaxation and optimum exercise in the open air. He must adhere to a simple and correct natural life. He must assume a cheerful, optimistic attitude, refrain from mental and physical overwork and worry.
The most important aspect of the treatment is the diet. To begin with, the patient should be placed on an exclusive fruit diet for first few days. During this period he should have three meals a day of fresh juicy fruits such as oranges, apples, grapes, grapefruit, peaches, pears, pineapple and melon. Thereafter, he may gradually adopt a well balanced diet of three basic food groups viz. (i) seeds, nuts and grains, (ii) vegetables and (iii) fruits with emphasis on sprouted seeds such as alfalfa seeds and mung beans, raw vegetables and fruits. The diet should include a moderate amount of raw milk preferably goat’s milk and milk products such as raw butter and homemade cottage cheese.
The diet should eliminate completely all animal proteins, except milk, as they not only lack in magnesium, but also rob the body of its own magnesium storage as well as of vitamin B6. Both these substances are needed in large amounts by epileptics. The best food sources of magnesium are raw nuts, seeds, soyabeans , green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale, beet-tops etc. The patient should avoid all refined foods, fried and greasy food, sugar and products made with it, strong tea, coffee, alcoholic beverages, condiments and pickles. The patient should avoid over eating and take frequent small meals rather than a few large ones. He should not eat large meals before going to bed.
Mud packs on the abdomen twice daily help remove toxaemic conditions of the intestines and thereby hasten removal of epileptic conditions. The application of alternate hot and cold compresses to the base of the brain, that is at the back of the head will be beneficial. The procedure is to dip the feet in a bucket of hot water and apply first a hot towel and then a cold one to the base of the brain. The alternate hot and cold towels should be kept for two or three minutes about four times. The process shall be repeated twice every day. Full Epsom-salt bath, twice a week are also beneficial.
If the sufferer from epilepsy has taken strong drugs for many years, he should not leave off entirely all at once. The dosage may be cut to half to begin with and then gradually reduced further until it can be left off completely.
An epileptic should strictly observe all the natural laws of good health and build and maintain the highest level of general health. He should remain active mentally but avoid all severe mental and physical stress. And above all, he should avoid excitements of all kinds.
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