Epilepsy in Children – Causes and Symptoms of Epilepsy in Children
Epilepsy in children is a disorder of brain which also affects the adult population. The electrical activity of the child’s brain is disturbed leading to recurrent seizures. It is chronic disorder and the brain becomes abnormal. This can only be controlled but not prevented.
Epilepsy affects 1 in 200 children on an average. It can occur at any time after the birth. It is a common disorder in children and is to be treated immediately.
Epilepsy in children is of two major categories – Myoclonic and Generalized seizures.
- Myoclonic seizures: Only a part of the brain is abnormal leading to seizures. It is of two types – simple where the child remains conscious and complex where the child loses consciousness for a period of time.
- Generalized seizures: The entire brain becomes abnormal leading to seizures.
Causes of Epilepsy in Children
Epilepsy in children has no specific causes but some factors have been found which are known to affect children. Here are some of the causes:
- Malformation of brain
- Brain hemorrhage
- Disease conditions such as encephalitis and meningitis
- Low blood sugar levels
- Genetical cause
- Exposure to toxic chemicals may later lead to epilepsy in children
Symptoms of Epilepsy in Children
Epilepsy in children have many symptoms. Each type of seizure shows different symptoms. The following are the type of seizures and their symptoms.
Simple partial seizures – Symptoms include:
- Muscle spasms and convulsions
- Strange behavior
Complex partial seizures – Symptoms include:
- Repetitive movements such as clapping, lip smacking and chewing
Absence seizures – Symptoms include:
- Loss of awareness
- Staring look and repetitive blinking
Generalized seizures – Symptoms include:
- Muscle spasms
- Jerking movements
- Difficulty in breathing
- Child is always sleepy and in confusion
Though there is no perfect test for the diagnosis of epilepsy, doctors recommend brain scans and blood tests to determine the type of epilepsy