Epilepsy is a physical disorder
The epilepsy incidence in western countries is around one patient per 100 citizens with roughly 1 new case every year for every 1.400 citizens and epilepsy is thus a fairly common disorder.
Epilepsy is not in itself a disease but a collection of symptoms. Epilepsy manifests itself in spontaneous, repeated and uniform body motoric movements with or without consciousness. It is important to understand that epilepsy is a neurological and not a mental disorder. Seizures occur because of a temporary disturbance in a larger or smaller group of neurons in the brain.
Seizures vary from person to person, but some will find the attacks similar from case to case. The same person may have different types of attack. Some are fully conscious during the attack, in others consciousness is affected and some are unconsciousness during the attack.
There are many types of epileptic seizures
The vast majority of people associates epilepsy with attacks of convulsions/spasms with the patient collapsing and shaking violently with arms and legs. However, this is just one of many different types of seizures. Epileptic seizures can - depending on where in the brain disturbance occurs - affect all parts of the sensory apparatus, movements, moods and levels of awareness.
The vast majority of attacks are very short lasting only around 2½ - 3 minutes with other attacks lasting from just a few seconds to - 1½ minutes.