Delirium in children


Nowadays, delirium is still a serious problem to kid’s health. It happens when the normal sending and receiving of brain signals become disabled. This disability results from many factors that make the brain vulnerable and cause a malfunction in brain activity. The most important thing is that both parents should prepare for the delirium condition which may occur with their child.

What is delirium?

Delirium is an extremely disturbed state of mind that occurs in fever, intoxication, and other disorders and is characterized by restlessness, illusions, and incoherence of thought and speech. It is also called “acute confusional state”. Delirium starts incidentally and makes a person frightened, especially the one who experiences it.

What are the causes of delirium?

Underlying illness or infection can cause serious delirium. An overdose of a drug may trigger delirium as well. Other causes such as high fever, head injury, dehydration, poisoning, disrupting of the sleep-wake cycle also make the child have a delirium.

What are the symptoms of a delirium in children?

Some symptoms are common to delirium, irrespective of cause, while some are cause-specific. They may include confusion—not knowing where they are, what day it is, who they’re with or who they are. They may easily have agitation or impatience. They may pick at things that aren’t there. They are simply upset and they do not respond to usual soothing. They have trouble with attention or memory. They have difficulty staying alerted.

Other symptoms like sleep disturbances, new or different behaviors like aggression, suspiciousness, or being withdrawn, talking in a way that doesn’t make sense, seeing or hearing things that aren’t real, etc.

What can I do if my child has a delirium?

There are some simple things you can do to make your child feel comfortable while waiting for a doctor or a health care provider. Firstly, you should keep calm and reassure your child at the bedside. Then remind him gently where they are and what time it is. You may need to provide familiar things like a favorite pillow, stuffed animal, family pictures or comforting music. You’d not argue with a confused child. It’s a good idea to distract your child with happy thoughts or images. If needed, you can provide glasses. Keeping your child safe during agitation is very necessary. Both parents have to encourage a child to get out of bed if medically allowed. You may need to explain to your child later if they have questions or remain upset about confusion or hallucinations.

How long does it take for my child to get better?

Delirium gets better when the cause is treated. Your child can recover very quickly, but it can take several days or weeks. People with dementia can take a particularly long time to get over delirium.

How does my child feel after treatment?

Your child may not remember what has happened, especially if he had memory problems before. But your child may feel unhappy and recall dreadful memories – and even worry that you are going mad. It can be helpful to talk with someone who can explain what happened. This might be a family member, a care provider or a doctor. They can go through a diary of what happened each day. Most people feel relieved when they understand what happened and the reason why.

To understand a delirium condition better, parents have to read more information about this state, take some guidance on preventing delirium. In case the condition is more serious, find good doctor and medical care to treat a delirium carefully for your children.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

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