Hey friends! How are you? I have been off the radar a little bit because I have been sick with episodes and PNES. Don’t know what PNES is? Be prepared to find out!
1. PNES stands for Psychogenic Non Epileptic Seizures. Across the globe people disagree what to call it- but in North America it is called PNES.
2. PNES is triggered by traumatic events, similarly that PTSD is. These traumatic events can range from childhood to adulthood. In my case I believe it is having serious epileptic episodes that have caused PNES.
3. PNES episodes look like seizures, although they are not coming from the brain. They look like seizures, although are more like a panic attack. When I had my most recent episode, I had a very stressful meeting, and then after I headed to the pharmacy to pick up my prescription. There are a few steps leading into the store, so on one of the steps I “felt weird” and immediately sat down. I started to breathe evenly, because I knew it was PNES. This part is spotty, but I remember gasping for air and my fiance was torn up beside me. I was getting very hot in my Winter jacket, but couldn’t say anything. I also wanted someone to call 911, but again thankfully that was taken care of. I was grasping for words when I could finally start talking, but it was really slow.
4. 20-30% of people with epilepsy have PNES. I remember being so mad when I was diagnosed with it! Not only did I have to deal with seizures, but these weird trauma seizures as well!
5. It is challenging to treat PNES. For me, I use regular meditation and deep breathing.
According to http://www.epilepsy.com, “For some patients with psychogenic non epileptic seizures, the seizures are a manifestation of trauma, which is also known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In order to treat patients with PTSD, the clinician has to take the seizure apart to see what the seizure represents in terms of emotions and memory as well as where this trauma is stored in the body,” Some people use Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing to help their PNES.
Essentially, these days I am working through my PNES. I am super frustrated that my seizures just started to get under control and the PNES is popping up all over the place.
Sita & Jojo