Seizures In Children: Things You Should Know About

July 25, 2022

Several studies conclude that 1 in 10 individuals experience a seizure at one point in their life, and the disorder can start showing effects right from childhood. Unfortunately, it is not possible to find the exact cause of the condition in children just by considering their symptoms. Thus, the doctor needs to run different tests to diagnose the exact type of seizure.

Well, when your child is fighting seizures, it can be a lot stressful for you, and a strong team of doctors is what you need. The medical staff at South Valley Neurology is exactly that. They have experience in treating patients of 6 years and above, and thus you can rest assured that your kid’s health is in safe hands.

Causes of seizures in children

While the commonly known cause is epilepsy, several other medical conditions and reasons can trigger a seizure in children. Some of these conditions and reasons are:

  • Brain injuries
  • Cancer
  • Infections
  • Fever
  • Poisoning
  • Exposure to drugs or alcohol
  • Electrolyte imbalances
  • Hypoglycemia

Different types of seizures

The seizure experienced by children falls under the same categories as that of adults – Generalized and Focal.

Generalized seizures

In this type of seizure, both sides of the brain are affected. The category is further divided into different types, and the most common ones are:

Absence seizures

Children become temporarily unaware or unresponsive to their surroundings. They might simply seem absent, and it is difficult to guess that they are expressing a seizure. This type of seizure usually lasts just for a few seconds.

Tonic-clonic seizures

This type of seizure is more dramatic. You will see a child shaking and jerking vigorously. They might even scream and cry out loud. This seizure is reported to last for about 5 minutes or less.

Focal seizures

When only one side of the brain is affected, it causes what is called a focal seizure. If a child is experiencing a simple focal seizure, small changes might be experienced in his consciousness. Mostly, the child will be aware of their seizure episode. However, if it is a complex focal seizure, the child will not be conscious and aware during the seizure.

Atonic seizures

This type of seizure falls in both the categories of general as well as focal. In this type, either one or both sides of the brain can get affected. A child may lose muscle control and fall on the floor.

Infantile spasms

This is a specific type of seizure that is experienced by kids under the age of 2 years. They are very brief as they last for just about 1 to 3 seconds. However, some kids might even jerk their arms and legs every few seconds for nearly 5 to 10 minutes. It is difficult to differentiate these seizures from normal muscle spasms but if they go unrecognized, they can cause serious epilepsy in the future. To ensure a child’s normal growth, it is crucial to seek medical assistance immediately.

When it comes to seizures in children, parents always expect it to be a dramatic event. However, some seizures can be extremely subtle, and thus parents won’t even know it is a seizure. So, it is best to consult a doctor as soon as you suspect any change of behavior in your child, or they have an episode of becoming unconscious.