Contrary to what many people may know, epilepsy is a fairly common disease that affects many people of different age ranges around the world. There is no definite cause that explains its appearance, although there are factors, such as genetic factors, that are related to this disease. Epilepsy can arise at any time in a person’s life so it is possible that, although they have never had a history of epilepsy, several repeated seizures suddenly occur.
Although this disease can occur at any age, there is a high percentage of children who develop it at a very early age . Childhood epilepsy does not have to have a negative impact on the life of the child and, provided that the necessary precautions and adequate treatment are carried out , the day to day of this can be completely normal and like that of any other child.
WHAT IS CHILDHOOD EPILEPSY?
Epilepsy is a disease of varying degrees of severity that affects the nervous system and is a disorder caused by excessive activity of brain cells or neurons . It is characterized by a series of repeated seizures or seizures in which the epileptic person suffers from uncontrolled muscle jerks , also called seizures , sudden body stiffness and / or fainting .
Suffering these types of attacks spontaneously is not a symptom of suffering from epilepsy because for a person to be diagnosed with this disease, the seizures that he suffers must be repeated . Many parents concerned about the health of their child may think that epilepsy is caused by a trauma to the head or fever, but nothing is further from the truth because these last two disorders, or any other, are not related to the appearance of epilepsy. In the case of a child, the knowledge that parents and their teachers or caregivers have about the child’s illness will be essential for the child’s daily life.
HOW TO ACT BEFORE AN EPILEPTIC CRISIS IN A CHILD?
In the event that an adult is faced with a child’s epileptic seizure, the most important thing they must do is remain calm . This first step is very important whether the person affected by epilepsy is a child or an adult, since being calm and not presenting any type of burden will facilitate the intervention of help much more . Although at first it is almost instinctive to grab the body of the victim to stop the seizures, which in reality should be done to move away any harmful object with which you can harm yourself.
Another important step to take when faced with an emergency epilepsy crisis is to place some type of cushion under the victim’s head since, with the seizures that this may present, it is quite likely that they will be hit. Trying to hold the child so that it stops fidgeting in case of seizures is a mistake that will not make them stop or the seizure disappear.
On the other hand, and although many people believe that it is something of help, holding the tongue will not facilitate the assistance to the child when he is in an emergency situation. This is a false myth that comes from the belief that a person, in the midst of a crisis, can swallow his tongue , which is impossible. It is essential that, during an epileptic seizure, the child can breathe easily . Do not put anything in his mouth and loosen any belt or knotted scarf that he may have will be of great help so that the little one can take in as much air as possible during the duration of the crisis.
Something that will also help the little one will be to measure the duration of the epileptic seizure , something quite useful when later it is necessary to make a diagnosis and treatment. It will be convenient to call the emergency health services whenever the child’s seizures or state of crisis last more than five minutes . On the other hand, if after a first epileptic seizure, the little one presents several in a row, it would also be advisable to call the emergency department. In general, epilepsy seizures do not usually last more than a minute .
Once the epileptic episode is over, it is very important to turn the little one on his side and speak slowly to him . A calm voice will help you return to your normal state and in turn will also help you understand what has happened to you. Raising awareness from childhood to young about their problem will help them understand little by little what epilepsy consists of. Education on this subject, both for the person with epilepsy and for their parents and / or caregivers, will be the basis to be able to face the problem without incident .
PRECAUTIONS TO BE TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT
Although the steps to follow during an emergency seizure are essential for the victim to overcome it without sequelae , there are a series of precautions that will facilitate the care and attention of a child with epilepsy and that, on the other hand, will help to the parents or whoever is in their care to become familiar with the needs of the child.
As for technologies and the use of screens such as television or computers, the child can lead a normal life as long as the only source of light in the room where they are is not the screen itself. That is, ambient lighting, a minimum distance of two meters and not exceeding for hours playing will be ideal in these cases. Even so, the recommendations of a specialized doctor are quite important.
On the other hand, drinks with caffeine , theine or with some type of stimulant are also strongly discouraged for children with epilepsy since these types of liquids contain substances that act directly on the nervous system . Despite these indications, it is true that it is not essential to follow a certain type of strict diet, although paying attention to these series of aspects will help to avoid a possible seizure.