How Dental Care Can Help Your Child Correct These Behaviors
Has your child been struggling with bedwetting and snoring throughout the night? For many young children, this can severely disrupt their sleep. It can also be signs of a sleep disorder. About 1 to 4% of children, aged 2 – 8 suffer from disorders such as sleep apnea. In many cases, this can be linked to nocturnal enuresis, or chronic bedwetting. While many parents seek out various solutions to this, oftentimes they don’t realize that the connection could be a symptom of the possible cause: obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
If your child is snoring, having trouble sleeping or is drowsy throughout the day, and wetting the bed, they may have OSA. While this may seem to be a strange correlation, studies have shown that children with OSA exhibit bedwetting more often than other children who were observed with sleep-disordered breathing (SDB).
What Causes Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Medically, obstructive sleep apnea is a condition that causes children to have trouble breathing while asleep. Typically, the most common cause of OSA is enlarged tonsils and adenoids. The tongue, glands in the mouth, or even tonsils that are too big can obstruct the airway and lower oxygen levels in the body. This leads to disrupted sleep, which can be exceptionally harmful to children.
When your kids don’t get enough sleep, in addition to being cranky or irritable, it can cause disruptions in their development. If left untreated, OSA can lead to growth, learning, behavior, and even heart problems. So, how can your dentist help?
Treating Obstructive Sleep Apnea in Children
A certified dental health care professional with experience in sleep apnea can help to treat OSA – and the bedwetting that comes with it. The steps your dental care provider may take to help diagnose and treat the condition may vary depending on your child’s unique needs. Some of the risks that may lead to OSA include:
- Genetic history of the condition
- Medical conditions, such as down syndrome of cerebral palsy
Your dentist can use a variety of different techniques to correct this issue in children. Most commonly, a tonsillectomy or an adenoidectomy can be done to reduce their size or remove them completely.
However, if the symptoms are less intense or can be successfully treated without surgery, other methods may be used. For some patients, the issue corrects itself as they get older. Together with a qualified dentist, such as Dr. Beaufils, you can determine the best course of action to treat your child’s OSA.
Beaufils Dental is a complete health dentistry office that is located in Cooper City and offers a variety of dental services to patients of all ages. Suffering from sleep apnea? Don’t hesitate – contact us today to schedule a consultation for you or your loved one!