Parents Watch Out for Symptoms of Sleep Apnea in Children

It's common for this generation's kids to show attention, attitude, or behavioral problems. Sometimes, no matter how hard parents try to understand their children, the gap seems to widen out with each step they take. It can be quite frustrating. Nevertheless, parents shouldn't really fret. Why is that?

Well, many kids of today's generation who manifest attention and behavioral problems are actually fortunate because they get to benefit from results of related studies. For instance, obstructive sleepapnea syndrome (OSAS), a common problem in children, is now being recognized as a cause of daytime attention and behavioral problems. Unlike adults, children with OSA are harder to make out and diagnose because symptoms of sleep apnea are more complicated and kids cannot express themselves. That's the reason why parents should conduct an OSA home test to determine whether their child has it or not.


Many uninformed parents frequently take the symptoms of sleep apnea as signs of other things. Poor cognitive skills in school reflected in report cards are blamed on laziness and lack of interest in learning. Behavioral problems like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD, aggressiveness and poor focus are attributed to rebellion and character. Unfortunately, the shallow breathing and snoring at night are never linked to such behaviors. Parents cognizant of these symptoms take matters in a different way. Seeing a pediatrician can help checkupadenotonsillar hypertrophy (big adenoids and tonsils). A sleep specialist can help by doing tests like pediatricpolysomnography or you could conduct a sleep test at home.


What are the signs that a child has sleep apnea? Well, thanks to numerous studies, it is now easier to somewhat detect the symptoms of this sleep disorder. In a nutshell, the symptoms all point to the fact that children (and even adults) who have sleep apnea are not able to get a good night's sleep.

Children with obstructive sleep apnea generally manifest symptoms of sleep apnea like snoring, shallow and/or mouth breathing and difficulty sleeping. Being deprived of enough sleep, they exhibit daytime sleepiness, tantrums, too much crying, and excessive energy which eventually leads to lethargy. The school performance is dismal with poor attention span, sleepiness, crankiness, behavioral problems, and these all reflect in the low grades. Sleep apnea symptoms in children can similarly cause a lot of complications like poor growth, cardiovascular health problems and frequent headaches. Children with neuromuscular and CNS (central nervous system) complications like those afflicted with Down Syndrome Pierre Robin sequence, Treacher Collins syndrome and Crouzon syndrome must be monitored for OSA being more susceptible.


Parents need to pay attention to these symptoms of sleep apnea to be able to help one's kids. If symptoms are observed, consult with your pediatrician right away who could advice you on the steps that need to be taken. Coordinating with the school can lead to forging an alliance and even adopting a learning program that will work for the interest of your child. Do not ignore the symptoms. Help your child get the right treatment for sleep apnea and be well on his way to better sleep.

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