Snoring and obstructive sleep apnea in children
Snoring and sleep apnea is a common symptom, occur in about 10-12% of children more at the age group of 3-10 years. Risk factors for snoring include being overweight, having allergies or other causes of nasal obstruction, having enlarged adenoids and/or tonsils.
Since sleep problems can lead to stunted growth and daytime sleepiness, which can affect your child’s performance at school, if you suspect your child is having sleep problems, a thorough ENT evaluation would be a good idea.
Children with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) snore loudly and they have shorts periods of time during sleep that they actually stop breathing (apnea). Because sleep is interrupted, children with OSA are usually sleepy during the day, may complain of frequent headaches and sometimes have difficulty in school.
Nasal obstruction: commonly caused by allergies but can also be caused by having a deviated septum. A cold or upper respiratory tract infection is another common cause of nasal congestion/obstruction, and this is a reason why many children snore only when they have a cold.
Adenoid/tonsillar hypertrophy: enlarged adenoids and/or tonsils are the most common cause of snoring in some children.