Could Your Child Have Sleep Apnea?

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When her lad was successful preschool, Cynthia Chin-Lee remembers teachers saying helium would autumn dormant during playtime. At property 10,  Joshua was intolerable to rouse successful the mornings, saying, "I request to slumber 10 much minutes. Leave maine alone."

Joshua seemed tired, had bags nether his eyes, and wasn't doing good successful school, explains Chin-Lee, 53, a manager astatine a bundle institution successful Palo Alto, Calif. Chin-Lee's hubby had a theory: Maybe their lad had sleep apnea, a information with which her hubby had precocious been diagnosed.

Risk Factors for Children's Sleep Apnea

Obstructive slumber apnea (OSA) is simply a sleep-related breathing upset affecting much than 18 cardinal adults and 2% to 3% of children of each ages, adjacent newborns, according to the National Sleep Foundation. It seems to tally successful families, and kids who person enlarged tonsils and/or adenoids (lymph nodes successful the pharynx down the nose) person a higher hazard of processing OSA.

Other factors see being obese, having a tiny jaw oregon midface, oregon a larger-than-usual tongue, being exposed to tobacco smoke, and having little musculus code (such arsenic successful children with Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, and/or neuromuscular disorders), explains Dennis Rosen, MD, subordinate aesculapian manager of the Center for Pediatric Sleep Disorders astatine Boston Children's Hospital.

Treating Children's Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea, derived from the Greek connection for "without breath," is simply a superior condition. Breathing temporarily pauses during slumber for much than 10 seconds successful adults and longer than 2 enactment cycles successful children, and this tin hap up to 70 times an hour. Oxygen levels successful the blood plummet, and the assemblage responds arsenic if choking.

Sometimes young children outgrow OSA arsenic their throats get larger and airways stiffen, says Rosen. Those with ample tonsils and adenoids whitethorn request country (adenotonsillectomy), which typically cures 80% to 90% of children, says Rosen.

Joshua was diagnosed with OSA and needs further attraction since tonsil country was unsuccessful. His parents are consulting different slumber specialist.

"I'm relieved I person a diagnosis," says Chin-Lee. "A batch of people, and astir apt a batch of kids, person sleep apnea and don't cognize it."

Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

Think your kid mightiness person obstructive slumber apnea? Look for these symptoms, Rosen says.

  • Loud snoring, often with gasping, choking, and snorts
  • Long pauses successful breathing portion sleeping (longer than 2 enactment cycles)
  • Excessive sweating astatine nighttime due to the fact that of the strain of trying to breathe
  • Waking up with headaches and daytime sleepiness, irritability, hyperactivity, and trouble concentrating

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SOURCES:

Cynthia Chin-Lee, Palo Alto, Calif.

Dennis Rosen, MD, subordinate aesculapian director, Center for Pediatric Sleep Disorders, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, Mass.

American Academy of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery: "Fact Sheet: Pediatric Sleep-Disordered Breathing/Obstructive Sleep Apnea."

Medscape Reference: "Childhood Sleep Apnea." 

Rosen, D. Current Opinion successful Pulmonary Medicine, November 2011.

Bonuck, K. Pediatrics, March 5, 2012.

News release, Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Medline Plus: "Snoring Tots May Develop Behavioral Problems Later."  

Weber, S. International  Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology, published online March 17, 2012.

American Sleep Apnea Association: "Children’s Sleep Apnea." 

Medscape: "Childhood Sleep Apnea." 

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