Psychogenic Non-Epileptic Seizures (PNES) are a defense mechanism used to protect us against the painful and life threatening trauma we are either experiencing of have experienced in the past. This must be fully understood or healing will be very difficult. You may sometimes hear that PNES are caused by stressful situations. This is not the case. Actually it is what is known as flashbacks that “cause” the seizures. Stressful situations can be a trigger for the flashback however.
So, here is the order in which PNES occur:
- Stressful situation, smells, sights, sounds, words and other things that are similar to what occurred during the past trauma.
- Feelings and sensations in us that closely mimic the original, severe trauma.
- SEIZURE (PNES)
- This defense mechanism is selected and used involuntarily to protect us.
Please do not forget that the original trauma is the key to overcoming these seizures, not avoiding the stressful or specific situations. And the best way to do this is to work on facing, understanding and desensitizing the past trauma.