Children’s snoring and sleep apnoea

Snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnoea in Children, Toddlers & Babies

Simple snoring from children if soft is often not a problem, but loud snoring and periods of stopping breathing are much more important issues. Even snoring, if loud can be a sign of increased effort of breathing and may mean that the child’s sleep is sub-optimal. Sleep apnoea is when there are apnoeic events, which is where the child stops breathing (pediatric sleep apnea). This may exhibit as snoring that then goes quiet and then starts again, sometimes with a snort or a choking noise.

Often the child will be tired during the day, need a daytime sleep when they normally shouldn’t for their age, show poor concentration skills and possibly behavioural problems. It is believed by the Paediatric and ENT specialists in Australia that this is an undertreated problem that can cause many long term side effects such as memory development, concentration skills, heart and lung disease, and potentially cognitive problems in untreated severe sleep apnoea.

Fortunately in a child the problem is easily treated by removal of the adenoids and tonsils by an ENT surgeon. Only rarely is there any other reason for ongoing symptoms following adenotonsillectomy.

If you have concerns that your child may not be sleeping efficiently, please organise a referral from your local doctor to a ENT / Sleep Specialist in Brisbane.