If you have epilepsy, your neurologist has undoubtedly prescribed at least one type of medication to help with your seizures. The most common treatment for this neurological disorder is medication—typically some type of anticonvulsant medication, which varies based on a person’s medical history and the type and severity of the seizures.
The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) notes about 25 to 30% of people with epilepsy will still have trouble with episodes, despite treatment with meds or surgery. So some people consider turning to complementary therapies such as acupuncture for some relief. The reasoning often goes like this: since many people have found relief from pain or nausea through acupuncture sessions, it’s possible that acupuncture could help in other situations, too.
The research into the benefits of acupuncture continues, although scientists sometimes disagree about the efficacy of acupuncture—is it just the placebo effect at work, or can it be attributed to something more concrete like the release of certain neurotransmitters in the brain? Acupuncture is not the only alternative or complementary therapy that people with epilepsy are trying—some have found some relief through herbal therapies and supplements or through chiropractic therapy. Would it hurt if you tried it? The answer is “no.” Talk to your doctor if you’re interested in trying acupuncture or other complementary therapies.