It can be scary and distressing for you to see your child having a seizure, especially if it’s the first time your child has it. At the age of toddlers, children are prone to febrile seizures or febrile seizures.
Febrile seizures are generally harmless and almost all children who experience them make a full recovery afterward.
However, as a preventive measure, parents need to know what a febrile seizure is and how to handle it if it occurs at any time.
Here Popmama.com summarizes information about febrile seizures in toddlers, reported by the NHS:
1. Signs and symptoms of febrile seizures
When having a febrile seizure, your child will show signs and symptoms, including:
- Arms, legs and other limbs legs
- Loss of consciousness
- In some children will wet or soil themselves
- Mouth foaming
- Eyes roll back.
Seizures usually last about 5 minutes. After the seizure, the child will be sleepy for about 1 hour.
Sometimes, a febrile seizure can last more than 15 minutes and affect one area of the child’s body. These are known as complex febrile seizures.
2. Causes of febrile seizures
The cause of febrile seizures is not yet known. But so far febrile seizures are associated with an increased child’s body temperature (fever).
Experts suspect a genetic factor, because the possibility of febrile seizures increases if there is a close family member who has a history of this illness.
In most cases, the fever that causes febrile seizures is caused by an infection. Examples include chickenpox, flu, middle ear infection, or tonsillitis.
3. What to do when a child has a febrile seizure?
If your child has a febrile seizure, lay the child on a flat surface and make sure it is not in a dangerous place (near wires, for example).
Do not put anything in the child’s mouth during a seizure, including drugs. This is dangerous because there is a possibility that the child will bite his tongue.
Immediately rush the child to the hospital or call an ambulance if:
- Child has a seizure for the first time
- Seizures last more than 5 minutes and show no signs of stopping
- Mama thinks the seizures are caused by another serious illness, such as meningitis
- Child has difficulty breathing
Although febrile seizures are common in children and most are harmless, it is important to keep your child checked.
4. When is the time to check the child to the doctor?
Febrile seizures can be diagnosed from the description of what has happened. When a child has a febrile seizure, it is important for parents to note:
- How long does the seizure last?
- What happens, such as body rigidity, twitching of the face, arms, and legs, loss of consciousness, etc.?
- Did the child recover within 1 hour after the seizure occurred?
- Has the child had a febrile seizure before?
Further tests, such as blood tests or urine tests, may be needed if the cause of the child’s illness is still unknown.
5. Complications of febrile seizures
Febrile seizures are associated with an increased risk of epilepsy. Many parents worry that if their child has repeated febrile seizures, they may develop epilepsy as they get older. Epilepsy is a condition in which a person has repeated seizures without a fever.
It is true that children who have a history of febrile seizures are at risk for epilepsy. But it should be emphasized that the risk is quite small. It is estimated that children with a history of low-grade febrile seizures have a 1 in 50 chance of developing epilepsy later in life.
If you are worried about your child’s condition, you should consult with your pediatrician to get proper direction and treatment if needed.
Hope this information helps.