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Taking care of kids while having epilepsy ?

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can my husband take care of our sons if he is epeleptic??

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replied May 26th, 2010
Epilepsy Answer A12499
Hi, welcome to the ehealth forum and I am glad to help you.
You seem concerned if your husband having epilepsy take care of your children.
Persons with well-controlled epilepsy have no restrictions on child care, but those with episodes of impaired consciousness or control of movement must take special precautions when caring for a baby or a young child. The precautions will depend on the child's age, its nature, and other circumstances.
If possible, your husband with uncontrolled seizures should not bathe the baby alone. The baby should be placed in a safely designed baby bath and transferred to and from the bath relatively close to the floor. If the baby bath is placed inside a larger tub, the drain should be open. The room where the bath is given should be carpeted if possible. The father should always be prepared if he has an aura or warning sign of a seizure while giving bath to the baby.
A parent with uncontrolled seizures should be extremely careful when carrying the baby. That is not to say that father with epilepsy should not carry a baby, but care must be exercised. Some get enough warning of a seizure that they have time to place the baby in a safe place. Others have no warning, and must be especially careful when caring for a baby. Diaper changing by a parent who is at risk of having a seizure is best done on the floor or on a low, soft surface where the baby would be safe from falling.
The baby or young child of a parent who has epilepsy is better off sleeping in its own crib or bed. There is a chance the child could be injured if the parent had a seizure, especially a tonic-clonic seizure, while sleeping.
As the baby becomes a toddler, other potential dangers confront a parent whose seizures are not fully controlled. For example, walking or playing near a busy street with an impulsive, active 2-year-old could be potentially dangerous if the parent had a complex partial seizure. During the minute or two of the parent's impaired consciousness, the child's ball could bounce into the street and the child might run after it. Although events such as this are rare, it is worthwhile to consider ways of reducing the risk. In this case, the child might be given another toy that is less likely to bounce into the street, or the child's hand and the parent's hand might be linked by a colorful plastic coil that will keep them close together.
If a parent's seizures are not fully controlled, the disorder should be discussed with older children. Explaining to the children what a seizure is, why the parent takes medication, and why the children should not worry is comforting to them. As the children get older, they should be told more about epilepsy and what to do if first aid is needed.
Missed medications, sleep deprivation, and stress can aggravate seizures. For new parents, some sleep deprivation and stress are unavoidable, and dramatic changes in the daily schedule can easily lead to missed medications. It is important to recognize these potential problems and plan to reduce their impact. Caring for a baby is stressful and asking family members or others to help is a good idea.
Hope this helps. Take care.
Note: This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

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