Need advice on pediatric OSA?

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Pediatricians should ask about sleep during every well-child visit, advises Dr. Lisa Meltzer.

"Children who snore, have problems falling asleep, are difficult to wake in the morning, or who fall asleep in school should be further evaluated for sleep disorders," she says.

Meltzer was the lead author of a study called "Prevalence of Sleep Disorders in Pediatric Primary Care Practice." Her research was presented June 8 at Sleep 2009, the 23rd Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies.

Because sleep problems in children can have a major impact on learning, growth and development, it's important for pediatricians to receive education and support in the diagnosis and treatment of sleep disorders, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM).

The academy reports that the following signs may indicate a child has a sleep problem:

• Parents spend too much time "helping" a child fall asleep

• The child wakes up repeatedly during the night.

• The child snores very loudly or struggles to breathe during sleep.

• The child's behavior, mood or school performance changes.

• A child who used to stay dry at night begins to wet the bed.