Down syndrome and Brain Seizures

You’re in the middle of a function when the child starts acting strangely, staring blankly and moving his hands, leg, and mouth in an odd manner. Well!! These are the symptoms for seizures. 1 to 13% of children with Down syndrome are affected with brain seizures. Out of which 40% of children show symptoms for seizures before the age of 1 year. If it is not treated early on, the symptoms for seizures may worsen. Here’s everything you need to know about seizures in children and how to manage them properly! (Child with developmental delay: Signs and Remedies)

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Types of seizures

First understand what are the types of seizures. Doctors divide seizures into two types based on how and where abnormal brain activity begins. First one is focal seizures and second is generalized seizures. (Difficulties in Learning, Reading and Writing: 7 Foods that help)

1.Focal seizures

Focal seizures result from abnormal electrical activity in one area of your brain. It can occur with or without loss of consciousness:

  • Without loss of consciousness These seizures can alter emotions or the way things look, smell, feel, taste, or sound, but the person does not lose consciousness. They may become angry, joyful, or sad all of a sudden. Some people experience nausea or other unusual feelings that are difficult to describe.
  • With impaired awareness These seizures are characterized by a change or loss of consciousness or awareness that feels similar to being in a dream. The individual may appear to be awake, but they stare into space and do not respond normally to their surroundings, or they perform repetitive movements.

Symptoms of focal seizures can be mistaken for those of other neurological disorders such as migraine, narcolepsy, or mental illness.

Also, check Epilepsy in Kids

2.Generalised seizures

Generalized seizures are seizures that appear to involve all areas of the brain. The following are examples of generalized seizures:

  • Absence seizures – Absence seizures, formerly known as petit mal seizures, are common in children and are distinguished by staring into space or subtle body movements such as eye blinking or lip smacking.
  • Clonic seizures – Clonic seizures are characterized by jerking muscle movements that are repeated or rhythmic. Symptoms for seizures on both sides of the body usually affect the neck, face, and arms.
  • Tonic seizures – Muscle stiffness is caused by tonic seizures. These seizures typically affect the muscles in your back, arms, and legs, causing you to lose consciousness and fall to the ground.
  • Atonic seizures – Atonic seizures, also known as drop seizures, result in a loss of muscle control, causing you to collapse, fall, or drop your head.
  • Myoclonic seizures – Myoclonic seizures are characterized by brief jerks or twitches of your arms and legs. Often, there is no loss of consciousness.
  • Tonic-clonic seizures – Tonic-clonic seizures, formerly known as grand mal seizures, are the most dramatic type of epileptic seizure and can result in an abrupt loss of consciousness, body stiffening and shaking, and, in rare cases, loss of bladder control or tongue biting.

Also, check Speech difficulties in kids with Down Syndrome

The Connection between Seizures and Down Syndrome

Seizures affect people with Down syndrome for a variety of reasons. Some seizures, for example, are caused by cardiovascular disease. Seizures caused by abnormal electrical activity in the brain develop in person with Down syndrome as a result of decreased inhibition of electrical pathways, increased excitation of brain cells, structural abnormalities of the brain, and changes in the amount of certain neurotransmitters. There are almost certainly other reasons why seizures occur in Down syndrome. They have still not been explained.

Seizures in people with Down syndrome are similar to seizures in other people. Some seizures affect only one part of the body while others cause jerky movements throughout the body. Seizures in people with Down syndrome may also cause loss of consciousness, incontinence, and fatigue. Fortunately, right therapy can be successfully control symptoms for seizures.

What to do when somebody is having a seizure?

If somebody with you is showing symptoms of seizures, don’t panic; there are things you can do to help them.

  •     Help them in lying down on the floor.
  •     Turn the person on his or her side to avoid choking on drool or vomit.
  •     Do not attempt to halt the seizure’s movements.
  •     To avoid head injuries, place something soft under the person’s head.
  •    Create a safe and secure environment for the individual and yourself.
  •     Stay with the person who is having seizures.
  •     Remove any clothing that is too tight around the neck.
  •      Do not put anything in their mouth, including your fingers.

Also, check Autism and sensory sensitivity

Treatment of seizures in kids: 

Medication is usually the first step in treating a seizure disorder. But because every body is different, no one responds to treatment in the same way, so there is no “right treatment.”

1.   Seizure-prevention drugs

There are numerous seizure-prevention drugs on the market, known as anti-epilepsy drugs (AEDs) or anticonvulsant drugs. However, finding the one that works best for each child can take some time.

2.    OTHER TREATMENT for symptoms of SEIZUREs :
  •       Brain surgery
  •       Medical devices to prevent and control seizures
  •       Dietary therapies (e.g. ketogenic diet, modified Atkins diet, low glycemic index treatment)

ingredients help to improve SEIZURE IN Down syndrome:

1.BRAHMI:

Brahmi is a brain superfood that is thought to sharpen the brain by protecting cells and increasing chemicals involved in learning and memory. It can improve mental performance by influencing neurotransmission through acetyl choline and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Brahmi improves memory, reduces anxiety, helps in seizures, and promotes attention by restoring brain receptor function. (Drinks good for brain health)

2.ASHWAGANDHA:

This herb functions as an adaptogen. Ashwagandha has been shown to reduce anxiety and stress, which leads to better brain performance. Furthermore, it raises acetylcholine levels, which aid in memory, mental focus, and intelligence. Ashwagandha also improves nerve cell communication and stimulates the body’s ability to heal any nervous system damage. It also helpful for the treatment of seizure and headache without any adverse side effects.

3.SHANKHAPUSHPI:

In order to improve brain functioning, shankhapushpi is an old remedy. The powerful antioxidants and flavonoids present in it improve the memory capacity, focus, concentration, calmness, alertness of an individual. Since it is a brain tonic and stimulator, people taking shankhapushpi have improved memory, reasoning, problem-solving, and other cognitive abilities.

4. NUTS

All the nuts like almonds, walnuts, cashew, peanuts and hazelnuts are rich in vitamin E and help in boosting memory. They are also antioxidants which protect against cell damage. Walnuts are rich in omega 3 fatty acids and are a valuable substance for brain function, memory and thinking abilities. This fatty acid also encourages cognitive functions. (best nuts for protein)

5. SEEDS

Apart from nuts, seeds like flex, chia, melon, sesame and pumpkins also contain powerful antioxidants like vitamin E that protect the brain from free radical damage. Sunflower seeds impact overall mood and mental processing powers and therefore it is considered a brain boosting snack. Pumpkin seeds are high in magnesium, copper, and much higher in zinc than other seeds, which help in increasing concentration and memory. One of the easiest to feed brain boosting foods for kids.

6. OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS

Multiple studies have shown the link between low omega 3 fatty acids and speech delay, poor focus and concentration. These healthy fats are crucial for brain development and help to manage speech disorder and delay in kids. It can also improve speech quality. Include fish like salmon, flaxseeds, walnuts, soybeans and tofu for adequate supply of omega -3 fatty acids.  (10 reasons to give kids with omega 3 foods)

7. VITAMIN E

Vitamin E acts as antioxidants and kills free radicals which can damage our nerves resulting in speech problems. Including more fruits, vegetables, nuts, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds in the child’s diet will help.

8.MAGNESIUM, MANGANESE & ZINC:

Magnesium is abundant in nuts such as almonds, peanuts, cashews, and pumpkin seeds. They are also antioxidants which protect against cell damage. Manganese is an important nutrient for seizure patients because it plays an important role in cerebral functions. This mineral is abundant in nuts, whole grains, and legumes. Furthermore, person with seizures required zinc for bone growth and is frequently deficient. It is critical to include meat, eggs, nuts, and legumes in your child’s diet.

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