Epilepsy is a chronic neurological disease caused by brain dysfunction due to excessive electrical activity of neurons and accompanied by periodically occurring seizures.
The disease is often manifested in childhood. The frequency of epilepsy in children reaches 1%, with febrilic cramps (fever cramps) occurring more often: about 5% of children. In general, in 2/3 of patients epileptic seizures begin before the age of 20 years.
In the case of childhood epilepsy, the responsibility for the treatment of a small person and his health falls on the parents. To help a child, first of all, it is necessary to have a correct idea of his physical and emotional state in order to be able to answer any questions and not to be frightened by answers.
However, despite all the concerns, it is important for parents to understand that the diagnosis of epilepsy should not cause unreasonable restrictions. Childhood should remain a childhood.
A child who has become a “victim” of hyperopecia of the parents who protected him from any overwork and solved all important questions for him, may not want to “part” with the seizures, because the role of the “sick” becomes psychologically comfortable for him. Therefore, all restrictions should be carefully considered and recommended by the doctor individually for each patient. It is important to understand that epilepsy in children requires special attention, but not panic and total control.
Despite the fact that a lot of materials are available about this disease, there are still many myths in society about the limitations that children diagnosed with epilepsy must follow.
MYTH 1: physical activity should be excluded.
Epilepsy and sports are quite compatible if approved by the attending physician. Moderate physical activity contributes to normal development and better tolerance of antiepileptic drugs in young patients.
Depending on the severity and control of seizures, children with epilepsy may even be recommended sports activities that are aimed at strengthening physical fitness, but at the same time do not create excessive stress for the body, such as swimming under the supervision of adults.
MEP 2. vaccination should be avoided
Most vaccinations are as safe for children with epilepsy as for healthy children. However, some vaccinations are still not recommended for children with epilepsy.
Some children may have a febrile reaction (fever) to some vaccinations in combination with the development of febrile seizures without remote effects or allergic reactions.
In any case, it is necessary to consult with your doctor to get the most complete information about whether each particular vaccination can affect the child’s nervous system.
MEP 3. It is necessary to transfer the child to home schooling
For a child, socialization is extremely important. Therefore, a transfer to home schooling may, on the contrary, have a negative impact on his/her condition and life in the future. Parents should understand that attending regular classes in kindergarten and school develops the child, allows him or her to be in the company of other children, which has a beneficial impact on his or her development as a person. He/she thinks less about what is different from his/her peers. This allows him to reach his potential and inspires him to achieve.
It is best to consult with the attending physician when choosing a kindergarten or school. In most situations, children with epilepsy study in general educational institutions, even though in some cases they need the help of specialists.
In some cases, children may face academic failure. When this happens, it is necessary to understand the reason. Poor academic performance can be due to a child’s inability to concentrate due to illness or medication, poor sleep, or specific characteristics of perception that are dependent or not dependent on epilepsy.
In this case, parents need to monitor how the child learns this or that knowledge. It is also necessary to consult with a doctor and be examined by specialists.
The main thing to remember, despite the diagnosis, the child can and should live a full life. The possibilities of medicine nowadays allow to achieve in most cases a long and stable remission without any symptoms of disease. But not the least role is played by the parents’ mood and the psychological climate in the family. Therefore, parents and relatives should try to help the child and his doctor in the fight against this disease.