What Causes Epilepsy?


In a lot of cases it is unclear why a person has epilepsy. It may be because their genes have an effect on how their brain works, as about one in three people with epilepsy have a family member who also has it.

Other possible causes of epilepsy are:

  • Brain damage, for example caused by a stroke, head injury or infection
  • Drug or alcohol abuse
  • Lack of oxygen during birth
  • Problems with brain development in the womb
  • Alzheimer's disease

Myths about epilepsy

It is important to note that epilepsy is not:

  • Contagious
  • A mental illness
  • A developmental disability