Just like adults, many children suffer from sleeping disorders that prevent them from getting a sufficient amount of sleep. Pediatric sleep apnea is a common sleeping disorder that involves a narrowing of the upper airway during sleep, causing patients to experience short periods of disrupted breathing that can interfere with sleep. Pediatric obstructive sleep apnea (POSA) is a condition that causes the airway to become blocked during sleep. This may be due to enlargement of the tonsils and adenoids.
Exams to diagnose sleep apnea may be:
- Polysomnogram (overnight-sleep-study):
- Sensors are placed on the child's neck and chest to record breathing patterns, snoring, oxygen levels, heart rate, and muscle activity.
- Oximetry is a test used to measure the oxygen level of the blood. Your physician may allow you to do a home version of the sleep study. This would require you to record your oxygen levels in your home. A normal level of oxygen is usually 95%.
Sleep apnea may develop as a result of:
- Enlarged adenoids or tonsils
- Muscle weakness