A very few people have so-called 'television epilepsy' and may have a seizure while watching television or staring at the flashing screen of videogames. If a particular game causes problems, a different game should be chosen without the same stimulus on its screen. If television is the problem, it should be watched in a well-lit room, and sit about 10 feet from the screen using the remote control to change channels. If approaching the screen, covering one eye with a hand reduces the effect by 50%. The susceptible person should avoid approaching the set to make adjustments, or should cover one eye while so doing.

Computers & Video Games

When using VDU's ensure that a glare reduction filter covers the screen to reduce brightness. The rate of flicker which triggers photosensitive seizures is very low at 15-20 flashes per second on average; this is not usually found on newer machines - though where it is found the rate can possibly be adjusted to a safer range depending on the machine specifications.

When working with a VDU a person should take frequent rest breaks to avoid becoming overtired.


They are a normal part of growing up and should not be avoided by the young person with epilepsy who wants a social life. Some people may find flashing lights unpleasant, but generally it is only 'strobe' lighting operating at between 15-25 flashes per second that may, in some individuals with photosensitive epilepsy induce a seizure. Most disco lights flash at a slower rate. Covering one eye may help to reduce the effect of the flashing light in susceptible people.

Persons with photosensitive epilepsy attending discos should check in advance whether strobe lighting is used and if management will switch it off.