Febrile seizures in kids: What parents need to know
Be prepared in the event of a fever-caused seizure by knowing these important facts
Febrile seizures most commonly happen when a child is a year to 18 months old. But between six months and five years old, seizures brought on by high fever may also occur.
It usually begins during the first few hours after a child’s fever starts. It’s an alarming sight for parents, as children who experience this will start twitching, stiffening, and eye rolling. You should observe your child for signs of unresponsiveness, disturbed breathing, and darkening of the skin.
How long do febrile seizures last?
This type of seizure usually takes place within a span of one minute, but during severe instances, it can last for up to 15 minutes. After a seizure, you will notice your child will almost instantly return to normal.
How often can they happen?
They can happen more than once within one day.
What should I do if my child has a febrile seizure?
First, act quickly. Next, place your child on a surface (floor, bed) away from any hard of sharp objects to prevent any injuries. Turn their head to the side to prevent them from choking on their own tongue, saliva or vomit.
Remember: do not put anything in your child’s mouth. Call your doctor immediately, especially if the seizure doesn’t stop after 5 minutes, rush your child to the doctor ASAP.
Can febrile seizures be dangerous?
While febrile seizures DO NOT cause any harm to your child’s brain or nervous system, it’s important to note that other types of seizures can result in disability or death. It’s best to consult with a physician to fully confirm of your child’s seizure was indeed caused by their fever.
Once you bring your child to the doctor, they will be examined to know the exact cause of fever. Treatment will be focused on addressing the cause of the fever and not the seizure. Certain tests can be done to rule out serious conditions like meningitis, specifically in kids less than a year of age.
It’s up to your child’s doctor if medications will be recommended.