Febrile seizures are convulsions seen in infants and children, and occur due to a high body temperature. The following HealthHearty article provides more information about this condition.
Full body convulsions that occur during a fever, in infants and children up to six years of age, are called febrile seizures. They are generally observed when the body temperature increases above 102° F (38.9° C), and last for a few minutes. They are observed to be twice as common in boys.
The child may have a fever of about 102° F (38.9° C) or more, the eyes tend to roll, and the muscles tighten or shake a lot. A child may moan, have trouble while breathing or may even lose consciousness. Febrile seizures are divided into the following two types.
Simple Febrile Seizure
This is the most common type, and lasts for a few seconds to ten minutes, and then subsides.
Complex Febrile Seizure
It lasts for more than 15 minutes, and can occur more than once within 24 hours. It generally tends to affect only one side of the child’s body.
Febrile Seizures and Epilepsy
Many parents fear, that febrile seizures can give rise to epilepsy. However, the former condition is triggered by fever, which can be a result of infections as well as immunizations; whereas epilepsy refers to a set of neurological disorders characterized by seizures. Only 2% of the children who experience febrile seizures are likely to develop epilepsy in the later stages of life.
You may get extremely worried and alarmed on seeing your child experience a seizure. Stay calm, and do not try to give him any oral medication during the convulsion. Make sure that the child is lying in a safe place, and does not fall down or hit something hard. Ensure that the child is lying on his/her side, to avoid choking. Remain near your child, and stay alert for any signs of breathing problems, or change in color of the face. Never try to put anything in the child’s mouth during a seizure. Also, do not try to restrain the child, or place him in cool or lukewarm water to lower the temperature. If the seizures last for more than ten minutes, seek professional medical help immediately.
Usually there is no additional treatment required, and such seizures do not indicate any long-term medical problems. However, after the episode, make sure you take the child to a doctor for evaluation. Speak to a medical specialist, and get all your doubts or concerns cleared.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice.