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Identifying Sleep Apnea in New Jersey Children

Submitted by New Jersey Snoring Solutions on Fri 07/15/2011 - 12:34

Sleep apnea in children is still often under diagnosed. It is estimated that up to 12 percent of kids snore and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) affects from one to ten percent of children. While both children and adults can develop sleep apnea, it is important to realize that the effects on a child from sleep disordered breathing are often different than the affects of sleep apnea on adults in terms of cause, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment. Because the symptoms of sleep apnea in children are more elusive than those of adults (with less distinctive and loud snoring) the diagnosis of sleep apnea in children requires the awareness of all OSA characteristics.

Symptoms of Sleep Apnea in Children

Symptoms of sleep apnea in children are usually different from adults. Although loud snoring can occur, you are more likely to observe louder breathing as well as mouth breathing in children with sleep apnea. Children with OSA are usually tormented by nights of restless sleep including night sweats. Excessive daytime sleepiness is noticeable since restful sleep is disrupted. One study, which looked at 50 children with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome, found that in 86% of cases, stage 3 REM sleep was non-existent, so it’s no wonder the children are tired the next day. Other signs and symptoms of sleep apnea in children include learning deficits and personality changes such as hyperactivity and anti-social behavior. Also noted symptoms include frequent nightmares, sleep walking and bed-wetting.

Since sleep is so important to normal growth and development, children with OSA often display a failure to thrive. Unlike adults with sleep apnea, children with OSA can often be underweight, as opposed to being overweight. When the tonsils and adenoids are enlarged and obstructing the airways, recurring infections to the upper respiratory tract are also common. Hypertension and acute cardiac symptoms could also be present.

With proper treatment, however, the symptoms usually subside, making your child happier and healthier. New Jersey Sleep Apnea Solutions offers treatment for OSA and snoring sufferers throughout New Jersey in West Orange, Livingston, Millburn and Short Hills, NJ. Call New Jersey Sleep Apnea Solutions today for a free consultation at 855.WHY.SNORE or 855.949-7667.