Will seizures slow my daughter's development?

Randee - posted on 03/16/2010 ( 20 moms have responded )

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My baby is epileptic and we cannot find out why she started having seizures?? Will she be delayed with her development?

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Lauren - posted on 03/21/2010

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My son started having seizures at 5 months, he is now seizure free and medication free since October. He is 2 1/2 and perfectly normal.

Melissa - posted on 04/01/2010

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Most young ones that I know out-grow their seizures. My son, however, is autistic and his seizures started when he was 15 and will at least continue through adolescence. In this case, he will probably have them throughout his life, but fewer when the hormones stop. The eegs will tell you what part of the brain is seizing and thus, what the seizure will affect. For mine, it is fine motor skills. Please ask me more questions if you like. Our situation looks far worse than yours so I won't go into details unless you ask. All I am sure of is that many small children that get them, outgrow them.

Elaine - posted on 03/16/2010

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I can only speak from my own experience. My Down Syndrome son was doing relatively well developmentally until he developed infantile spasms at about 6 months old. The medications can be as much of a cure as a hindrance. I can count the months that my baby was so doped up he barely interacted at all. He simply ate and slept. I was told by my neurologist that it was very important to get the seizures under control because they most definitely can cause more damage.



My son now is nearly 3 and although Down Syndrome generally means he would be slower than other children to learn to do everyday activities his epilepsy has compounded that greatly. He cannot yet sit up, speak, or eat on his own. His infantile spasms developed into myclonic seizures and we are treating them. He is developmentally about where a 4-5 month old would be.



Wyatt's rather a special case. It would be wise to consult your own neurologist about the effects on your child. It's important to find a neurologist that communicates well and often when starting a new medication. I also found it helpful to record new seizure activity with my digital camera on the video option. It was much easier to show the doctor what I was witnessing rather than try to describe it.

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Jessica - posted on 06/20/2013

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My daughter, who is now almost 13 months, had seizures starting at 3 days old that were eventually found to be a genetic disorder. She was put on phenobarbital for 10 months and had been seizure free since. She has met all her milestones on time and is a happy, smart baby. I'm sure your baby will be fine as long as tests show no damage.

Mandy - posted on 01/10/2013

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My daughter was diagnosed with Apraxia at 2 1/2. At a little over three she started having seizures. These are due to a genetic disorder where her brain sends out sleeping brain wave patterns. At first the seizures terrified me (they still do as I suffered them as a child and remember the fear and panic I felt). They terrified me because here my baby was struggling just to communicate and now the seizures. What would they do to her development now? She was tested as having a 5 year old comprehension (she was not yet 3) but the expression of a 9 month old! Amazingly after each set of seizures she vocabulary jumped. Her expression jumped. It is astounding and no one knows why. Her neurologist is puzzled but will not stop the anti seizure meds. When we did stop them she ended up having 3 in 3 hours and vomiting. They were the worst yet. Her Speech Therapist is flabbergasted as well.
I guess my point is you just do not know what will happen but I hope for the best for you and you will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Lucy - posted on 01/07/2013

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Hi
My daughter also has had seizures since birth, her first one we noticed at 5 days old. It was terrible and at there worst the seizures were every hour of every day ! I'm not much help to you but am here for you ! we too don't know why this is happening? We have had every test under the sun! I also worry about my daughters development she is 8 months old and still not head holding , smiling although she is on 3 different AC and the docs have said that this might have alot to do with how dopey she is ? stay strong it gets easier xxx


I have just realisd how old this post is please let me know how things turned out for you all the best xxx

Renee - posted on 05/18/2010

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It usually doesn't.i had my first one when I was 8 months.once they became uncontrolled it affected my learning but I was having 150 temporal lobe seizures a day.

remember if she studies for a test then has one that night she might not remember what she studied.My neurosurgeon said it best having a seizure is like unplugging your computer without shutting it down properly first.If you suspect anything follow up quickly .Make sure the school knows and she at least has a 504 plan under rehab act if not an IEP inder IDEA spec ed laws.I could have gotten so much more help in school esp the 4 yrs before my brain surgery when they were spiraling out of control.

Rachel - posted on 05/14/2010

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Like many moms here have said, it depends on the child. My daughter is going to be 4 years old in august and has epilepsy. Before we found out about her seizures when she was 2, we had tests done because she could not talk and we couldn't figure out why. A few months later she had her first seizure. during that month, she had 3 partial seizures that each lasted about 8 minutes. Finally the dr's pushed for a eeg and found that she has spikes throughout her brain constantly and they were disabling her from being able to speak properly. she was put on keppra but that only made her angry and upset all the time but did not help the seizures. Then they put her on Trileptal and it seemed to be working. We got her into disability classes at the elementary school where she works with a speech pathologist but still there was no improvement. She just had another eeg and they found her brain activity has increased and she has many more seizures... she now has absent seizures as well as partial seizures. she just started Lamotrigine today but unfortunately they don't know if it will help with her speech. My suggestion is to not wait if you see a problem with your child's development. Apparently, I could have gotten my daughter into programs earlier but i listened to dr's instead of pursuing it on my own. Good Luck!

Melissa - posted on 05/14/2010

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It really depends on the type of seizures she has I think. My daughter started having petit-mal seizures at age 5 or 6. I think 5, but she wasn't diagnosed until age 6.5. Her doctor told me it won't effect her development or her learning capabilities. He only said she will be more lethargic after them and that will keep her from concentration.

Good luck and keep researching your daughter's type of epilepsy. She may outgrow it and I pray that she does.

Let me know if you ever have any questions or need to "talk". It's a hard thing to have to deal with and only other mothers/fathers with epileptic children truly understand. It's amazing the strength you have when you look at your situation, but sometimes you need to cry with another person who gets how you feel.

Big Hugs!

Melissa

Carrie - posted on 05/11/2010

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Hi there! I think any time a kid has a disability they will be delayed in areas. I have twins with disabilities. Colby had major surgery at 5 months old. The effects of it tho it saved his life delayed his gross motor, oral and even feeding. He was 2.5 before he could chew and swallow a hot dog. Carlee just got diagnosed with epilepsy and she continues with her delays (from being a twin preemie). She just doesn't have the maturity of a 3 year old. The only thing is that she has been speech delayed her whole life but since she started having the seizures her language has sparked and she talks a lot more....if there can be a positive to having a seizure for her that would be it.



So, I would say to expect delays. But, get her the help she needs right away. There are early childhood intervention programs thru the health dept and public schools at no or little cost to you. Talk to her pediatrician about these or call and ask. Sometimes they just need a little more help .

Christina - posted on 05/06/2010

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My daughter was diagnosed when she was 7. she was in a special education class and now she is in a normal grade 7 class with extra help with her math. She is doing awesome. I do not feel it has had an effect on her education. But being her mom I also have epilepsy when i was hit by a car when i was 3. But never got diagnosed with epilepsy till i gave birth to my daughter. And since her i have not been able to conceive so she is my miracle baby and i love her to pieces.

EVELYN - posted on 05/06/2010

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Hi, my daughter started getting seizures since she was a month and half born baby her development was very slow she started sitting up at a year old and crawling also.she began to walk almost at 3 years of age she is now 13 years old who can't speak or do anything for herself such feeding dressing herself or any other activities that a normal 13 year old can do.it is so devastating she is such a beautiful little girl who is the love of my life. I pray that one day she will be okay and can be able to do everything that she has missed through out these years and that is to be a kid play run and have lots of fun.I live in newyork she was born in Puerto Rico I came here to have a second opinion and so far they haven't found a diagnosis I'm planning to move to Boston hopefully I'll have better luck. I hope and pray for u that your child can succeed in life I wish u and your family the best God speed

Tia - posted on 04/22/2010

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my daughter has infantile spasms which are under control now due to medicine. her deveopment is slow she is just learning to sit unaided now at 8mths. she has other probs aswell tho so that might be why.

Asha - posted on 03/30/2010

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well when my daughter started having seizures she was only 6 months old she had 6 within 24 hrs, i havent noticed any real delay in development, but it did take her a lil longer to do somethings like walking and crawling but she's normal shes had EEGs to test her brain waves and they say that she is perfect health for her age i dont think that ur daughter will have any delay in her development my daughter is very smart shes excellent with names and ppl and places so dont think that there is anything to worry about, but i would see ur pediatriction on a regular basis just for peace of mind :)
hope i was of some help :)

Michelle - posted on 03/28/2010

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My daughter started having seizures at two years of age.She was put on one med and that did not help so we tried a med called triliptal and she has had no seizures since sept of last year.Well it is differant for each kid,but yes the seizures made my daughter have alot of delays,she has a speech delay.She is now five and in kindergarten now.She did not sit by her self untill 9 months olod and she did not talk until two,she did not roll over till 6 months old.Now she gets help with her speech.She has very weak fine motor mussels and she has an ot at school Well I think you should talk to your dr and see what he or she says.I hope it does not delay her to much. my daughter did not walk untill she was almost two years old And still till this day my dr can find no reason my daughter is having seizures.Well if you want to talk you can email me at michellemotsinger@yahoo.com.Well now my daughter has alot of delays.Well ever child is differant so please talk to your daughters dr.The brain slows down when a person has a seiure.I also had seiures when i was little,i had them untill i was 13 years old and i had alot of delays,i also was born two months early.Well now days they have so many things they can do to help with the delays.Well talk to you later

ALICIA - posted on 03/25/2010

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THE EFFECTS OF EPILEPSY VARIES PER PERSON. THE DOCTOR'S WILL MOST OFTEN TELL YOU THE WORST CASE SCENARIO, HIGHLIGHTING THE NEGATIVE SIDE EFFECTS. WHICH SOMETIMES MAY EVEN BE THE CASE. BUT AS A PARENT OF A SOON TO BE 17 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER WHO GREW UP WITH EPILEPSEY, I SAY GO ABOVE & BEYOND THE DOCTORS WORD EVERY STEP OF THE WAY. STARTING RIGHT NOW!!!!! (I know what works for some may not work for everyone but here's just a few things I did with my daughter)...

#1. THEY SAID KERIONA MIGHT TALK LATE & WITH SPEECH PROBLEMS ( YOU START SHOWING HER ANY AND EVERYTHING & HAVE HER NAME IT WITH YOU ON A DAILY BASIS, EVEN IF SHE CAN'T TALK YET, SHE SHE'LL MEMORIZE THE PICTURE & THE SOUNDS OVER TIME. BE SURE TO ALWAYS SPEAK CLEARLY TO HER & HAVE OTHERS DO THE SAME, CORRECT HER MISPRONUNCIATIONS."THIS IS NOT THE TIME FOR BABY TALK." YOU HAVE TO FEED,CHALLENGE, EXERCISE, & STRENGTHEN HER BRAIN & HER VOCAL ABILITIES) MY DAUGHTER WAS SPEAKING CLEAR BASIC SENTENCES BY THE TIME SHE WAS 10 MONTHS OLD. DON'T LET HER "LIVE" WITH THE BOTTLE, PACIFIER OR THE SIPPY CUP STUCK IN HER MOUTH 24/7". TAKES AWAY FROM HER TALKING & SINGING, LEAP FROG VIDEOS TAUGHT MY DAUGHTER A LOT WHEN SHE WAS LITTLE.

#2. THEY SAID SHE MIGHT WALK LATER THAN MOST KIDS (GET HER UP AND MOVING!!!!! LOVE & HUG ON HER ALL YOU WANT, BUT PUT HER DOWN & even get down with her, & LET HER BE ACTIVE. TRY ALL FORMS OF PLAY & MAKE SURE YOU SHOW HER THE TECHNIQUES OF THE GAMES/PLAY, SO SHE'LL UNDERSTAND WHAT SHE'S SUPPOSE TO BE LEARNING FROM IT, DON'T JUST TRY THE EASY STUFF, AGAIN, YOU WANT TO CHALLENGE HER, SHE MAY GET IT THEN, LATER, OR NOT AT ALL, JUST KEEP TRYING DIFFERENT THINGS. BUT ALWAY REMEMBER TO SHOW PRAISE FOR HER EFFORTS NO MATTER WHAT. KERIONA WALKED BEFORE HER 1ST BIRTHDAY.

#3. THEY SAID SHE MIGHT HAVE LEARNING DIFFICULTIES ( I LET HER GO TO DAYCARE/PRESCHOOL the ones where they teach as well as play SO SHE COULD INTERACT WITH OTHER CHILDREN & TRY TO LEARN & DO THE SAME THINGS AS OTHER KIDS HER AGE. DON'T ALLOW THEM TO TREAT HER DIFFERENTLY BECAUSE SHE HAS EPILEPSY, SHE WONT BE VERY FOND OF THAT.
OVER THE YEARS, SHE HAS HAD A FEW ISSUES IN SCHOOL, "specific learning disorder" LIKE NOT BEING ABLE TO FOCUS & STAY ON TASK, MILD FRUSTRATION WHEN SHE CAN'T FIGURE THINGS OUT, & BEING DISORGANIZED, SO SHE MAY NEED LOTS OF EXTRA ENCORAGEMENT & MOTIVATION. YOU'LL BOTH NEED LOTS OF PATIENCE.

OVERALL, KERIONA IS A SMART & NORMAL YOUNG LADY. SHE ENJOYS ALL THE THINGS THAT TEENS TEND TO ENJOY. SHE FLUXUATES BETWEEN A "B" & A "C" AVERAGE IN SCHOOL.

I WISH YOU & YOUR DAUGHTER BLESSINGS OF GROWTH IN LIFE,

Trisha - posted on 03/25/2010

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it can happen but if you get overly worried you can ask her consaltent for a development check up and get a rough idea how far behind she is

Jodi - posted on 03/20/2010

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My son is 18 years old. Started having seizures at 10 months. He was ahead in many areas developmentally. Now at 18 the only thing that we have noticed is that he had difficulty in math. Physically he is just like any 18 year old. I only know how my son has been affected. I am not sure about others.

Amanda - posted on 03/18/2010

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MY DAUGHTER HAS BEEN HAVING SEIZURES SINCE SHE WAS A MONTH OLD...SHE WAS DELAYED..BUT ONLY DUE 2 THE FACT THAT SHE WAS PREMATURE...HER SEIZURES NEVER AFFECTED HER DEVELOPMENT....SHE IS NOW 3...AND SHE HAS A SPEECH PROBLEM CUZ SHE HAS A MILD HEARING LOSS.

Angela - posted on 03/17/2010

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My daughter starting having seizures at 8months. She will be 5 in June and now has 3 different types of seizures. Eloise was always advanced with her speech and milestones which we are very thankful for. She has had and still does have many seizures and thankfully it hasn't appeared to slowed her development.

From early on we put systems in place to 'check' her after seizures. We taught her to sign before she could talk and would ask her what the signs for different things were after a seizure to see if she could still do it. We now use reading sight words. She has learnt 22 and after she has recovered from her seizures we get her to read them to us to see if she has lost any. 2 weeks ago she had a really bad cycle of seizures and could only read 3 of them the next day. She has now re-learnt them all.

I think it really depends on where the seizures are coming from and their frequency. We are like you and don't know why she has them as all test came back clear and no seizure activity was evident on her EEG. It is important to try and stop them though because they can do damage if they are constantly happening. I often feel though that the medication is sometimes worse than the seizures. Behaviour seems to be our biggest side effect which can be very challenging at times.

Good luck and I hope your daughters seizures become controlled and she develops into a beautiful and intelligent little girl. Take care of her and yourself xo

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