Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome & Mental Health Risks

When we think of epilepsy, we often think of neurological conditions that are treatable and effectively managed with medications. For some children, the complications of epilepsy and seizures are not effectively treated and, in fact, can leads to secondary complications that become the primary focus of health. If your child has been diagnosed with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, it is important to understand these secondary health complications.

Lennox-Gastaut syndrome is a type of condition that encompasses many symptoms – thus the basis for syndrome diagnosis. In addition to seizure disorder, this syndrome also results in the development of mental retardation, abnormal IQ, and positive finds on an EEG. Most difficult of all symptoms, however, are the presence of regression and the onset of mental health complications that typically become the primary focus of this seizure disorder.

If your child has been diagnosed with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, it is important to become familiar with the secondary mental health complications that arise. Most notably, children born with this condition will demonstrate symptoms of mood instability, personality disorders, aggression and, in response to these symptoms, may experience social isolation. As a parent of a child with this complication, mental health services are essential for your child.

The mental health conditions associated with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome will typically be of primary focus for your child’s care when living with this seizure disorder. Psychotherapy, psychotropic medications, and the use of alternative medical therapy for mental health may be recommended. While your child may respond to some degree of seizure disorder treatment, the mental health treatment will be most important.

Lennox-Gastaut syndrome is a complex neurological disorder that leads to a variety of secondary mental health complications. While the epilepsy and seizures may not be effectively managed, children can be taught to more effectively manage the associated mental health issues. Always seek out psychotherapy and mental health services when your child is diagnosed with this life altering health condition.

Sources: Partial Seizure Disorders, by Mitzi Waltz

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