You're likely to start by seeing your child's family doctor or pediatrician. You may then be referred to a doctor who specializes in disorders of the brain and nervous system (neurologist).
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment.
What you can do
- Write down everything you remember about your child's seizure, including signs or symptoms that occurred before the seizure, such as a fever.
- List medications, vitamins and supplements your child takes.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
For febrile seizures, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- What's the most likely cause of my child's seizure?
- What tests does my child need? Do these tests require special preparation?
- Is this likely to happen again?
- Does my child need treatment?
- Will giving my child fever-reducing medications during an illness help prevent febrile seizures?
- What should I do the next time my child has a fever?
- What can I do to help my child during a febrile seizure?
- My child has another health condition. How can we manage them together?
- Are there brochures or other printed material I can take? What websites do you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask other questions, as well.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:
- Did your child have a fever or illness before having this seizure?
- Can you describe your child's seizure? What were the signs and symptoms? How long did the seizure last?
- Has this happened before?
- Does anyone in your family have a history of febrile seizures or seizure disorders?
- Has your child been exposed to illnesses?
- Does your child have a history of head trauma or a neurological disease?
What you can do in the meantime
If your child has another febrile seizure:
Dec. 05, 2014
- Don't restrain your child, but do place him or her on a safe surface, such as the floor.
- Place your child on his or her side, keeping the face to the side and the lower arm extended under the head, to prevent your child from inhaling vomit if vomiting occurs.
- If your child had anything in his or her mouth when the seizure began, remove it to prevent choking. Don't put anything in your child's mouth during a seizure.
- Seek emergency care for a seizure that lasts longer than 10 minutes.
- Febrile seizures fact sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/febrile_seizures/detail_febrile_seizures.htm. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.
- Millichap JG, et al. Clinical features and evaluation of febrile seizures. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.
- Millichap JG, et al. Treatment and prognosis of febrile seizures. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.
- Chung S. Febrile seizures. Korean Journal of Pediatrics. 2014;57:384.
- Febrile seizures: Clinical practice guideline for the long-term management of the child with simple febrile seizures. American Academy of Pediatrics. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/121/6/1281.full.html. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.