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The first febrile seizure
The first febrile seizure that you witness with your child is just terrifying. It is the few minutes in which a mother faces her biggest fear: Loss of a child.
It happened on a Sunday around noon. My 3 year old daughter, Anne, had an infect and due to that also a high fever. She lay besides me and asked when we will have lunch. And then suddenly, she threw both arms up and began to shake uncontrollably. I grabbed her and realized that she is completely stiff. That was the point where I fell in complete panic. Her eyes were turned back, she was unconscious and she began to become blue around the lips. We dialed 911 (112 in Europe) and were brought to the hospital where we spent two nights.
As the fear from losing my daughter was ceasing my brain started to kick in again and I started to fire questions at the paramedics as well as the emergency physicians: What was the reason for the seizure? What should I have done differently? How can I see such a seizure coming?
What parademics tolde me about a febrile seizure
- The absolute height of the body temperature is not the problem.
- Febrile seizures are induced by a fast change in body temperature.
- Children who had one will likely have more seizures, too.
- There´s nothing I can do to prevent a seizure.
But for me, there was one very important insight: It´s all about monitoring the body temperature continuously.
A mother´s personal masterplan for prevention
So here´s my masterplan what I do since then every time Anne has a temperature, which is quite frequent:
- I monitor her body temperature continuously with this device. This way I see immediately if temperature starts rising fast.
- I try to keep her body temp steady by applying calf wraps with wet towels as soon as I see the temperature rising. Here is a guide on how to do that.
- If her temperature keeps rising every time after removing the wet towels I make a wet towel wrap around her chest. Here is a guide on how to do that.
- I continuously have an eye on her temperature and control the effects of my treatments and adjust them if necessary.
- If her temperature rises above 104°F I give her fever reducing medication. And I keep an eye on her temperature all the time.
We never had a seizure again! Fingers crossed that my masterplan will continue to work this way.
This continuous in-ear thermometer for children helped a lot being aware of her temperature all the time and being assured about the effect of my treatments.