Pediatric Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

For children to be successful in school and life, they need the basic necessities to be met first, just like the rest of us. Respirtatoy problems are one of the more often seen medical problems in children, and problems with being able to breathe and take in oxygen add up over time. This is one of the most basic needs–an oxygenated brain–and when this need is not met, this affects the child in many other parts of their school and home life.

What do we mean by Oxygenated Brain?

Brains need constant supplies of oxygen to function. In children, a continuous lack (even just a little lack) of oxygen can result in poor growth and development, orthodontic problems, and symptoms that are often misdiagnosed as ADD and ADHD.

Believe it or not (believe it!), one of the most common breathing disorders that prevent children from getting enough oxygen, leading to the above mentioned effects, is obstructive sleep apnea. That’s right, OSA!

Different from adults with OSA, in children, the obstructed airway is usually caused by enlarged tonsils and adenoids in the throat. Breathing through the mouth and/or having a narrow mouth structure are also factors that may contribute to pediatric obstructive sleep apnea.

Basic pediatric signs and symptoms that should raise flags are:

  •         history of breathing through mouth
  •         bad breath
  •         large tonsils
  •         snoring
  •         witnessed trouble breathing
  •         wet pillow in morning
  •         tiredness/fatigue in excess of normal
  •         history of frequent disturbed sleep
  •         history of frequent colds, ear infections, and sore throats

Health is a big part of the picture for being successful in school and being able to live to the fullest. If you think that your child may be suffering from an obstructed airway due to structural reasons, please contact us* or your child’s pediatrician*.
 
When making plans for your child’s health needs, please don’t forget that disordered breathing can negatively affect your child’s life in many ways and needs treatment if present.
 
As always, please feel more than welcome to get in touch if you have any questions or concerns.

Yours,
DB

*** If your child is unable to breathe or in distress,  please contact emergency medical services (911) and seek immediate medical care.***

This entry was posted in Oral-Systemic, Pediatric Dental, Sleep Apnea, Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *