Seizures are sudden and abnormal discharges of electrical activity from the nerve cells in the brain. Thought there are many kinds of seizures that people suffer from, absence seizure is a type that occurs only in children who are older than four years of age but have not yet reached puberty.
Absence seizures in toddlers causes decreased awareness in children for...
...brief periods of time.
The nerve cells of the brain help in coordinating all of the toddler’s activities. The personality, thinking and other sensory activities are interconnected to each other through these electrical discharges that emanate from the brain.
Sometimes, when giving off these electrical impulses, some neurons may get excited and give off abnormal electrical impulses. These seizures may span for a few seconds or for a few minutes. These are categorized into disorders according to the number of seizures experienced, their duration and the location of the excitable neurons.
There are two main categories of seizures—general and partial. When the electrical impulses that are abnormally passed, affect the entire brain, it is known as a generalized seizure. In such a seizure, it is not uncommon for a person to lose consciousness. In a partial kind of a seizure, the affect is only on a specific part of the brain and not the entire brain.
During absence seizures, toddlers typically experience a brief loss of awareness. This may last for a minute or even for a couple of hours. Absence seizures may also occur several times during a day. They may either fall, or show any awkward or abnormal movements. However, sometimes an episode is so brief that the child may in fact continue an activity without even noticing that there is something wrong. The seizure may only be identified because of rapid eye movements of other fumbling movements by the child.
Absence seizure is a genetic disorder and has been associated with abnormalities in the genetic material of an individual. Though studies have not been able to establish a clear inheritance pattern, it has been seen that children from families where someone suffers from epilepsy, are more prone to suffer from absence seizures.
The diagnosis of the seizures is made by ordering an electroencephalogram (EEG). This diagnostic technique helps measure the electrical activity in the brain. However, if the EEG doesn’t report anything, the possibility of seizures cannot be ruled out. The EEG, when taken while a child is experiencing seizures, will give an accurate report.