Children in a group setting

Epilepsy is a common long-term illness in children. In Finland about 5000 under 15-year-old children have epilepsy.

Epileptic seizure is caused by a temporary disruption in the brain’s electronic signals. Epileptic seizure is a symptom which disturbs the child’s daily performance. There are many different types of epileptic seizures which can last from seconds to minutes. Usually, a seizure lasts for a few minutes and passes by on its own. There can be different motor symptoms or feelings during a seizure. Level of consciousness and contact can either stay as normal or weaken during the seizure.

Most epilepsies can be well controlled with medication and there can be many attempts with different medication. However, for some, the seizures continue regardless of medication.

Effects of medication on children

Any medication can have side effects, for example tiredness, thus a child may need the opportunity to rest. Usually this can happen in the classroom without any need for special arrangements. Medication can also influence on behaviour. If the epilepsy medication changes one’s daily performance, this is not a behavioural problem.

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