Febrile Seizures. What EVERY parent needs to know. https://fantabulosity.com
Parenting, Real Life

Febrile Seizures, What all Parents Should Know

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Disclaimer: I am NOT a health/medical professional. I am simply telling the story of what we experienced as parents, with our little boy that day.

Scariest day of my life. Still. Three years later, still the scariest day of my life. As a mom, as a human.

Febrile Seizures. What EVERY parent needs to know. https://fantabulosity.com

It was Thanksgiving, 2012. My 17 month old toddler was safely strapped in to his carseat,  in the back of our Yukon, as we were traveling down unfamiliar highways, on our way to Alabama for a first time Thanksgiving celebration at my sister’s house.

 The tv was playing his favorite Thomas the Train movie, and I would turn around and check on him every 5 seconds, as we as moms do.

During a pit stop to grab a quick bite to eat, I pull him out of his car seat to give him a little stretch, only to find that he was scorching hot with a fever.

 As a new mom, with no nearby pharmacy to grab tylenol, I sat in the back seat with him, holding him, cuddling him, rocking him. After all, he was my baby, he didn’t feel good, and I wanted him to feel loved.
If only I knew holding him in my arms, probably wasn’t the right thing to do…

The sun was going down, and we were just an hour away from our destination. {6 Hours away from our house}  My husband and I looked at each other, decided to tredge the hour to my sisters house, where we would lay our baby boy down for bed, with tylenol, safely.

15 minutes in to our continued journey down the highway, me, sitting next to my son, I look at him checking in on his every move. My routine check, left me terrified…

His eyes were rolled back in his head.

My baby, my son…

What is happening!!!??

I screamed at my husband for his attention.

In the middle of nowhere, no street lights, no shops, no houses, no traffic, my husband came to a screeching halt and pulled our SUV over to the side of the road.

 Febrile Seizures, What Every Parent Needs to Know:

He was the healthiest baby I knew. Never had been sick, only fevers due to teething. What is going on with my son!?

I immediately panicked. I began running shoeless up the deserted highway, dialing 911, hoping to come across a mile marker sign to be able to tell the ambulance where we were.

My husband did right thing, remained calm, trying to regain my sons consciousness. I on the other hand, immediately fell to the ground with my baby in my arms, thinking my baby was gone, forever.

No mile marker was found, we had no idea where we were, with a response from the 911 dispatch,

Get in the car, and just start driving. Let us know what you see, and we will find you.”

As instructed, we piled in the car, headed down the road, and my sons lifeless body began slowly moving.

After 10 minutes, we finally saw the ambulance’s colors, come flashing towards us.

They took my baby, as my husband followed behind us, to nearest clinic.

What is a Febrile Seizure?

Your son seems to have had a febrile seizure.

“What? That means nothing to me. What is that? “

The doctor began to explain what this meant, as my son was slowly regaining consciousness and a normality to his breathing.

Febrile Seizure: is a seizure usually due to a spike in body temperature, {fever}, where the body becomes stiff, possible twitching, child looses consciousness, breathing becomes irregular {where it may even seem as though your child is not breathing at all}.
The child usually regains consciousness after about 5 minutes, and will continue to be extremely lethargic, and wish to sleep. Common in children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years.

You see, we were new parents. We read the baby books. I read a million articles on Pinterest. We watched the baby tutorials on YouTube. How did we not know what was going on with our son that night?

Quite possibly, because Febrile Seizures only affect 2-5% of children.
It tends to run in families. {I never thought to ask my parents if anyone had, had febrile seizures in the past. Why would I? I had never even heard of them. Only to find out, that my late Uncle had febrile seizures when he was a child.}

So I’m telling YOU.  I’m telling YOU, new mom. I’m telling you Dad. I’m telling you Grandma & Grandpa. I’m telling you teenage babysitters.

Febrile Seizures can happen, without a parent even warning you that it’s a possibility, because it has never happened to a child they know.

What to do if Your Child is Having a Febrile Seizure:

Holding my son that night when he had the fever, caused his body temperature to skyrocket. His little body couldn’t handle the high temperature, so his seizure took place.

What to do: tend to your child immediately, and place him/her on the floor, on their side, and do NOT place anything in the mouth. Make sure nothing dangerous is nearby, where the child will not be harmed with uncontrollable twitching and jerking.

The child should regain consciousness after about 5 minutes. If not, call 911 immediately.

When the child “comes to,” he/she will more than likely want to sleep, and sleep for a while. This is completely normal, and ok. Let that baby rest. He/She has just been through a lot.

My son is now a 4 year old healthy & fully energized, little boy. 🙂  My guard continues to be “up,” when I notice his body temperature rising. I no longer play the “should I give him Tylenol yet, or wait,” card. He gets it, to hopefully prevent a seizure from happening.

Febrile Seizures, what EVERY parent needs to know. https://fantabulosity.com

For more information on febrile seizures, Wikipedia has a great length of details to further your knowledge.

Please do me a favor. PLEASE share this with others. Sending this to someone, could very well help them for that unexpected, and unknowing time that their child is experiencing a febrile seizure for the first time.

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 Febrile Seizures. I had no idea these even existed. https://fantabulosity.com

12 thoughts on “Febrile Seizures, What all Parents Should Know

  1. Diana L. says:

    I know what you mean! My daughter had febrile seizures when she was younger. Luckily (?) for me, she had her first one in front of our doctor. It was 18 months of pure hell during which my daughter was subjected to a number of medical tests only to find out from my dear MIL my husband had them when he was younger and there was nothing to be concerned about. Did your son’s lips not turn blue when he was having his seizures? That was usually my tale tell sign for me.

    1. Jessica says:

      Oh my goodness!! Yes, lucky you for it to have happened in front of the doctor!! They did turn a shade a blue, yes. I forgot all about that!

  2. I am so sorry you went through this. I had febrile seizures as a child but didn’t know just how uncommon it is. My last one was at age 5 and I was still prone to fainting/dizziness but luckily no other adverse side effects. Because of my history, At the first sign of fever with my kids, I have given them Tylenol and they thankfully never had one. They are all older than 5 now so hopefully we are out of the woods for them with that. I also have Rheumatoid arthritis that I think was triggered by not getting strep throat treated right away. Knowing that is also hereditary, I am also all over the slightest indication of a virus/fever in my kids. Better to get it treated right away than suffer the consequence of a chronic illness like I have. Thanks for educating other parents on this. It’s one of those things most people don’t have to worry about, but so very scary when it does.

    1. Jessica says:

      My goodness! You poor thing. My oldest is just turning 4, so my guard will still be up for few years! {Ok, will probably always be up, lol}. Thank you so much for sharing your story!

  3. Allie says:

    I commented on your fb post too, but its funny I thought the same thing. Wth is a febrile seizure!?!?! Dr.Googled everything about it. Like you too, found out one of my uncles on my fathers side had them when he was young. And I too don’t play the fever game anymore. I alt. tyl and Ibu. until the fever is gone. I get a few nonvaxxing, granola moms that lecture me about over use of medication and to let the fever run its course. I tell them the day you see your baby having a seizure from the fever you will def. medicate the fever!

    1. Jessica says:

      Oh goodness yes. I’m not sure I ever gave my son tylenol until this happened. I was always wanting it to fight off whatever it was, but you’re right… when you see it happen, you want to do almost anything that you know of, to help him/her.

  4. Jennifer says:

    Just wanted to point out a few things. Giving your child fever reducing medication DOES NOT and will not prevent a seizure. I forget the actual numbers but having one seizure makes a subsequent seizure x% more likely, and that likelihood goes up with each seizure. A sudden change in temperature is what triggers a seizure, either up or down. My child has had seven febrile seizures in the past 6 months. It is completely and utterly terrifying.

    1. Jessica says:

      Thank you for pointing that out. Yes, I do not want anyone to think by me saying I give Tylenol now at the first sign, prevents a seizure. It is just what I want to do for my kiddo in hopes that one won’t take place. Thank you for your comment. Having 7 within 6 months is, you’re right, terrifying.

  5. Margo says:

    My youngest had first febrile seizure around 1.5 years old. It was a truly scary experience for 1 minute. Then at 3.5 she has had 2 seizures in 1 month. Let me tell you – she had one 45 min after I gave her Tylenol for her fever… and third seizure happened when her temp dropped from 102 to 99 suddenly…So…if they out to have them – nothing can help it. BTW no one in our family had febrile seizures.. not sure where it came from. But.. although it is a scary experience, better have the knowledge and be prepared. My doc gave us a prescription medication to use if she doesn’t come around from seizure after 2 min and then to call 911. Some doctors say it could last through 6th year of age… so hang on…

    1. Jessica says:

      Thank you so much for sharing your experience. How scary! Oh yes, I agree! That is 100% the reason I wanted to share my story, so other’s can hopefully have the knowledge, in case it hits you like a ton of bricks like it did us! :/

  6. Blanca says:

    My son had a it while he was taking his nap. My boyfriend and I taught he was playing, but when he wouldn’t get up we got scared. My boyfriend picked him up and he wouldn’t respond and he would just be asking for air. We ran outside of our room asking for help. Everyone in my house thought he was dead because he release a last yarn and put all his weight on us and starting spitting things out of his mouth. We fast got into a car and got him to the hospital where we learned what it was. I thought I lost my child I couldn’t stop crying. It was the scariest thing I ever saw.

    1. Jessica says:

      I’m so sorry that you went through this too! It is incredibly scary, and when you don’t know what it is… or not prepared for something like this, it’s double scary. Thank you for sharing your story!

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