Healthy Sleep in Children – (Exploring the importance of sleep)
Sleep is a vital part of every child’s growth and development. It is time when their bodies recharge, grow, consolidate day’s experience & prepare for next day’s activities.
Does Your Child Get Enough Sleep
Unfortunately many children may not always get the quality sleep they
Many Have Obstructive Sleep Apnea But Most Don’t Know It Yet
30% Of children between 2 – 6 years and up to 50% of children who are actually diagnosed with ADHD actually have pediatric obstructive sleep apnea.
WHAT IS PEDIATRIC OBSTRUCTIVE SLEEP APNEA (OSA)?
Obstructive sleep apnea is a breathing disorder characterized by pauses in breathing or periods of shallow breathing during sleep. This may be due to Complete or Partial obstruction of respiratory tract. Each pause can last for few seconds to few minutes & may happen anytime at night. Sleep quality is affected during this attack which eventually affects various parts of the body.
WHAT ARE ITS LONG TERM EFFECTS?
If left untreated Pediatric OSA would result in poor quality of sleep which is important for a child’s growth & development. It can also result in poor oxygen delivery which can affect a child’s fragile body both mentally & physically.
How do I Identify it?
So here are 3 simple checks to perform while your child is asleep.
Observe for restless sleep:
- Your child may toss and turn in bed, and attempt to breathe very heavily.
- This shows that your child is attempting to adjust his/her posture to open up airway
Watch for Unusual Sleep Postures:
- Your child may extend his/her head out and back, and be in a posture that looks unusual.
- This includes lying on one’s stomach or sitting upright to sleep.
- Your child has shifted into a position where their airway can be opened. When the airway collapses yet again, they will toss and turn until they find the next optimal position.
- An open-mouth posture may mean that your child is mouth-breathing, which is a clear sign of obstruction in the nasal passages.
Listen for Habitual Snoring
- There would be snoring for 3 or more nights in a week.
- This is a result of vibration when a child’s upper airway is being blocked.
What else can I look for?
Top 5 Daytime Symptoms:
- Daytime sleepiness
- Poor concertation.
- Poor posture
Top 5 Night time symptoms:
- Teeth grinding
- Restless sleep position
- Frequent nightmares
HOW TO GET HELP?
Observe your child for symptoms
Assessment for your child by a sleep dentist
Records including- radiographs, sleep studies(if required) will be taken
Understand the reason to sleep disordered breathing.
Get a customized treatment plan which includes Orofacial Myofunctional therapy.