Fainting in children can occur due to a simple reason such as dehydration or due to something as serious as a heart disease. Read on to know the causes and treatment for the same.
Fainting, a medical condition known as Syncope, is a very commonly experienced condition during childhood, with research showing as many as fifty percent of the children having had an episode of fainting at least once in their growing years.
The main reason why syncope occurs in children is due to a temporary condition in which there is lack of oxygen supply, through the blood to the brain.
- Vasovagal syncope, a condition which is triggered when a child is under stress, fear or pain can cause fainting.
- Orthostatic hypotension, a condition in which a child experiences a drop in his blood pressure. This condition develops in children if they have been standing or sitting for a very long time, causing the pooling of blood in the legs, resulting in lack of blood supply to the heart and the brain.
- Fainting can be caused due to cardiac conditions such as abnormalities in the heart rhythm, problems in the functioning of the heart due to certain diseases such as Kawasaki disease, ischemic heart disease, etc, and any obstruction to the flow of blood caused by conditions such as eisenmenger’s syndrome, primary pulmonary hypertension or aortic valvar stenosis.
- Any injury or trauma caused to the head, due to an accident.
- Illnesses and health conditions such as epilepsy, hysteria, hyperventilation or rapid breathing, inner ear problems and stroke.
- A fall in the blood sugar levels or lack of water i.e dehydration.
The treatment for syncope depends on a number of factors such as the age of the child, his medical history, cause and extent of his health condition, and the child’s ability to tolerate medicines or other therapies that are recommended.
Vasovagal syncope can be treated by avoiding conditions which trigger a fainting episode such as stress, and also by making a few changes in one’s diet, like increasing the salt intake and drinking lots of water. Children may be prescribed medicines such as Florinef, which helps the kidneys to retain sodium and fluid.
To cure fainting caused by Orthostatic hypotension, some of the things that can be done are making the child lie down, keeping his abdominal muscles relaxed, keeping the legs crossed at the ankles, keeping one leg elevated on a stool and the other one on the ground.
For fainting which is caused due to cardiac reasons, treatment is the only option. Some of the medications that are often recommended by doctors to treat this condition are beta blockers such as nadolol, propranolol and disopyramide.
Episodes of fainting in children, most of the time, should not be a cause of much worry for the parents as a percentage of any underlying serious medical condition triggering them is very little. However, if symptoms such as irregularity in the heartbeat, vision problems, shortness of breath, numbness in the body parts, problems with speech, amnesia, loss of bowel control, inability to move the arm or the leg and confusion, are present along with fainting, immediate medical attention is required for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.