Fits, faints and funny turns

Advice for professionals to be used with parents and carers

There are many reasons for childhood “funny turns”. Your medical practitioner will have given you a likely diagnosis and this leaflet contains links for further information on some of the commonest causes of funny turns in childhood. This leaflet is designed to alert you should your child’s symptoms change and advice as to where to get help. It helps to have a video of your child’s episodes to take to any medical appointments.

Click on this link to view the fits, faints and funny turns paediatric pathway.  

If your child has for the first time any of the following:

  • If they become unconscious and do not recover after 5 minutes
  • If they have a seizure lasting more than 5 minutes
  • Becomes confused or unaware of their surroundings (for longer than 30 mins)
  • Develops weakness in their arms/ legs or starts losing their balance
  • Develops problems with their eyesight
  • Collapses during exercise/ strenuous activity
  •  If your child remains unconscious place your child on their side until help arrives as seen below (see picture). 

You need urgent help.

Go to the nearest Hospital Emergency (A&E) Department or phone 999

If your child has any of the following at any time:

  • If they have more than one convulsive seizure in a week (Convulsive = unconscious with arms and legs stiff, sometimes shaking)
  • Loss of consciousness but has quick recovery (less than 5 minutes)
  • Change in their behaviour or excessive tiredness
  • Develops a persistent headache that doesn’t go away (despite painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen)
  • Develops a headache that wakes them from sleep
  • If your child has known epilepsy follow personalised care plan and contact named nurse if have concerns

You need to contact your GP Surgery today

Please ring your GP surgery or contact NHS 111 - dial 111 or for children aged 5 years and above visit

Your child may be diagnosed with one of the below conditions that requires no medical attention:

Here are links for further information:

Simple faint

Breath Holding attacks and Reflex anoxic seizures

Night terrors 

Sleep myoclonus (Brief jerks of one or more limbs. Occurs only in sleep. No treatment needed)

Pharmacy/ Self care

Pharmacists can advise and treat a range of common symptoms. No appointment is needed and most pharmacies have a private consulting area. Click on this link to find a Pharmacy near to you

If you are still concerned about your child, contact NHS 111 – dial 111 or for children aged 5 years and above visit


This guidance has been reviewed and adapted by healthcare professionals across the Black Country Integrated Care System.

How to put your child in the recovery position 

Please click on this link for further information.

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