What It Means When Your Child Snores

what it means when your child snoresMiami and Coral Gables, FL

Children should not snore when they sleep. During bouts of sickness, snoring may be normal, but if your child snores more than four consecutive nights they should undergo a sleep test and here is why.

Snoring is one of the most common symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). In other words, your child’s airway is restricted from adequate airflow. This means their little body is being robbed of oxygen that it needs to function, grow, and thrive. When a child is not receiving proper airflow, the child is likely to exhibit symptoms of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder).

OSA affects children differently than adults. Instead of feeling sluggish during the day, children are more likely to become hyperactive, have trouble concentrating, perform poorly in school, and experience moodiness. This is only a short list of health-related symptoms that your child may experience. Others include depression, daytime fatigue, cognitive dysfunctions, memory loss, and social interaction problems. So, if you have been told your child has ADHD, consider your child’s sleeping patterns and quality of sleep that could be to blame for their behavior. A simple sleep study can determine whether or not your child suffers from OSA.

Snoring is not the only sign of OSA in children. Does your child grind their teeth at night? This is referred to as bruxism and is typically related to stress. How could a child be stressed? It is simple; they are not getting enough sleep! Your child may not even realize they are experiencing stress related symptoms or anxiousness. This is why a sleep study is so important for your child’s growth and development.

Early intervention is key when it comes to your child’s OSA disorder. In a recent study of more than 11,000 children, it was determined that children that snored or breathed through their mouth while sleeping exhibited signs of hyperactivity, aggressive behavior, and anxiety. This study took place over a span of six years and began when the children were only six months of age. These children were 50 to 90 percent more likely to develop symptoms related to ADHD than children who breathed normally. By age 2 ½, children with OSA had the highest risk of developing behavior disorders such as hyperactivity. The study was conclusive in that early intervention is key.

Even more startling is the link between OSA and dementia. The early stages of Alzheimer’s disease are known as dementia. A key indicator of dementia is a buildup of the protein amyloid in the brain. In a study conducted using mice, in which their oxygen levels were decreased, results showed a buildup of amyloid in their brain. This is startling! What if the prevention to Alzheimer’s was a better night’s sleep?

With simple diagnosis and treatment, why risk it? At Miami Designer Smiles, we not only diagnosis OSA but help treat it as well. To schedule a simple, at-home sleep test for your child, contact Miami Designer Smiles today. We welcome patients of Miami and Coral Gables, Florida.