PARENTS

Toddler Sleeps On Mum's Chest Every Night - To Save Her Life

29/09/2014 12:35 | Updated 20 May 2015

Toddler sleeps on mum's chest every night - to save her life

A three-year-old who suffers from 100 seizures a day sleeps on her mum's chest every night – so her mother can save her life.

Scarlett Carter suffers from a rare form of epilepsy called Dravet syndrome.

The risk of death is so great, that Scarlett sleeps on top of her mother Yasmin every night so that when a seizure happens, her mum is right there to treat her.

Yasmin, 40, who lives in Brisbane, Queensland, said she lives in constant fear that one of these seizures will take her daughter away from her forever.

Yasmin said: "I sleep with a medication called Midazolam in my pyjamas every night so all her emergency equipment is with me and ready to go if she has a seizure during her sleep.

"She could die suddenly in her sleep because it's quite common as she's more fragile and at greater risk than any other children. You don't know when that final seizure is going to take your child's life."

Scarlett also suffers from a sleeping disorder caused by her condition which means some nights she sleeps for as little as three hours.

Now single mum Yasmin has launched her own fund-raising appeal and hopes to raise at least $20,000 to buy a car big enough to carry Scarlett and her two 10-year-old twin sisters, Sarah and Hannah.

At the moment, the mum transports them all in a 1996 Ford Festiva, which she says is a risk to the welfare and safety of her family.

Yasmin said: "We're trying to raise funds so we could get Scarlett a vehicle not only accommodates Scarlett's needs now, but is able to accommodate her needs in the future if we need to put her in a wheelchair.

"Dravet children become twice as heavy when they're having a seizure but hopefully, if we do get the funds, we can put wheel ramps on the larger vehicle and it will make it a lot easier for me and my daughters."

One in 30,000 babies are born with Dravet syndrome. Children with the disease don't outgrow the condition, which affects every aspect of their daily lives.

Yasmin explained: "With Dravet syndrome, you put your baby to sleep or you let your baby play in front of you and you don't know if that's going to be the last second you see them alive.

"Every single second of every single day may be her last – so every second is completely precious. And there's no cure – they can't cure it.

"She can do a beautiful dance and say a few words like 'mummy' but when she gets extremely tired - she has seizures and then she forgets how to dance or talk and we have to teach her how all over again - Her mind goes back to a newborn baby - similar to people with dementia."

Dravet children will also develop behavioural problems similar to autism - Scarlett now needs to be seated separately from her sisters as she may be violent at times and can cause them harm.

Yasmin told the Mail: "We can only give her soft toys now because she can fly into rages and she can cause lots and lots of damage.

"She's had seizures where, my two older daughters and I have an emergency protocol – the three of us work together. It's an incredible family that we've established because it's me and my two older girls – we protect her 24 hours a day."

Yasmin wants to raise awareness on Dravet Syndrome.

For more information about her appeal and the condition go to http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/help-our-angel-scarlett/240950.

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