Sleep Disorders in Children

| By Tots N Teens Pediatrics

Sleep Disorders in Children - Tots N Teens Pediatrics

Sleep Disorders May Cause Issues For Your Child

In order for your child to be healthy and develop the necessary cognitive skills they need in life, they must get the proper amount of sleep. Unfortunately, there are many children in the U.S. that are gravely sleep deprived. In fact, the National Sleep Foundation found in a poll that more than 2 out of every 3 children 10 years or younger have gone through some form of sleep disorders.

For a child going through a sleep disorder, they may experience:

  • More accidents or injuries
  • Behavior and mood problems
  • Overeating
  • Undereating
  • Struggles in school
  • Concentration issues
  • Learning issues

Sleep disorders in children are not all that uncommon. Many children go through them. Some are much less serious than others, but the impact they have on their growth and development is still high.

Symptoms of Sleep Disorders

When a child is experiencing a sleep disorder, it can have a great effect on their life. It is important as a parent for you to recognize the potential signs of a sleep disorder in your child. Here are some important symptoms to keep an eye out for:

  • Snoring
  • Breathing pauses during sleep
  • Difficulty falling asleep
  • Problems staying asleep
  • Difficulty staying awake during the day
  • Unusual activity during sleep
  • Behavior issues
  • Decrease in daytime performance

It is important that when you recognize these symptoms, that you reach out and contact a pediatrician like the ones at Tots N Teens Pediatrics. They will be able to better help you understand what is going on with your child.

Types of Sleep Disorders

While there are many children who go through sleep disorders every day, there is not a single disorder that can be blamed. There are multiple disorders and disturbances that can affect a child’s sleep pattern. Some of these include:

  • Obstructive Sleep Apnea: This occurs when your child has frequent nighttime snoring with occasional pauses in breathing. They may gasp or choke which will lead to a disruption in their sleep.
  • Insomnia: Insomnia is a sleep disorder that many people are familiar with. This disorder happens when a child has difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or waking up early. This can last a couple of day to multiple weeks. Often, this is due to anxiety or stress, so it’s important to find the stressors for your child.
  • Restless Legs Syndrome: This is a neurological sleep disorder that causes a creeping or crawling sensation over the child’s legs, and sometimes arms, creating an irresistible urge to move. This leads children to receive no rest and become tired during the day.
  • Night Terrors: Night terrors are much different than nightmares. This is often linked to an immature central nervous system and is usually outgrown. Your child may wake up suddenly with extreme agitation, screaming, crying, increased heart rate, and dilated pupils. These are harmless, but it is important to safety-proof your child’s room.
  • Sleepwalking: Like night terrors, sleepwalking is linked to an immature central nervous system. It occurs an hour or so after a child falls asleep. Your child will get up in the middle of the night, but not remember their actions. It sometimes has repeated motions, talking or mumbling, clumsy movements, and more.

Outside of these common conditions, some other sleep disturbances are:

It is important that if you ever recognize your child experiencing any one of these sleep disorders or recognize common symptoms, you should contact their doctor as soon as possible. A sleep study may be done on your child to understand the root of their condition, so you and their doctor can best treat them. If your child is experiencing a sleep disorder, contact the expert team at Tots N Teens Pediatrics.