When Susan brought her son—Robby—into our Saint Louis dentist office, she was concerned that he was grinding and clenching his teeth in his sleep. We met with Robby and Susan to assess Robby’s condition—ultimately we found that Robby was suffering from obstructive sleep apnea.
Now most patients that have sleep apnea are adults—sleep apnea is both more rare and more difficult to diagnose in young patients, but it does happen. Read on to learn more about what to look out for…
When a child’s sleep is disrupted due to obstructive sleep apnea, they’ll probably exhibit some behavioral signs. Your child may act tired, and unmotivated. Teachers sometimes tell parents that their child has started to lose interest in school or even become disruptive in class. When a child doesn’t get a restful night’s sleep he or she may start to act out and act sluggish.
Your child may also be waking up upset in the middle of the night. You may notice that they’ve started to snore loudly or even wake up gasping for air during the night.
Look out for these other signs of sleep apnea that may pop up when your child is sleeping—severe sweating, stomach sleeping positions (your child may be sleeping in a stomach crouched position), and bedwetting. Obviously, these problems can have a number of causes, so you should have your child evaluated by a dentist to determine if obstructive sleep apnea is a problem.
Obstructive sleep apnea can be effectively addressed with customized mouth guards and other treatments that help keep the airway open during sleep. Give us a call to schedule an appointment with our Saint Louis dentist office. During this consultation we’ll review your child’s symptoms and check for signs of airway obstructions. With proper care your child can sleep peacefully and wake up refreshed again!