The medical journal Pediatrics recently published a statistical analysis of childhood sleep patterns that indicated children as young as six months old who experience sleep apnea symptoms are at significant risk of exhibiting behavioral problems as they develop. If you think your child is suffering from a sleep disorder, it’s important to explore sleep apnea treatment sooner than later to encourage healthy growth.
Children need significantly more sleep than adults to stay alert and retain optimal health. By obstructing the airway and making sufferers wake up, however briefly, to catch their breath, apnea and other sleep disorders can interrupt your good night’s rest hundreds of times per night, depending on severity.
Kids with sleep apnea can suffer not only from the established health risks of the disorder but mental and emotional effects from insufficient sleep as well. The developmental impact of sleep apnea on children can manifest as:
- Emotional imbalance
- Difficulty coping with stress, possibly leading to frequent crying or temper tantrums
- Short attention spans, impulsiveness and hyperactivity
- Poor performance in school due to inability to concentrate, lack of engagement or unmanageable behavior
If any of these effects remind you of your child’s behavior, keep an eye out for sleep apnea symptoms such as:
- Loud, persistent snoring (can occur in children as well as adults)
- Tossing and turning in bed
- Breathing through the mouth
- Night sweats
- Frequent nighttime urination (for children, this could mean bedwetting)
- Difficulty waking up and getting out of bed for school or other activities
- Stunted growth compared to peers
To find out more about sleep apnea treatments for children and adults, please contact a sleep doctor in your area or call 1-866-727-6275 (1-8-NO-PAP-MASK) today.