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  • Dr. Lisa Wu

What's the big deal about sleep?

What is sleep breathing disorder and how can it affect my child and our family? 

Have you ever seen someone snore or gasp for air while sleeping? A child or relative or partner? Maybe it's you. What's the big deal? Most of us think that's not an issue. Snoring may bother your partner but we often don't think much about it. Snoring or gasping for air during sleep is a struggle to breathe. When we struggle to breathe or stop breathing our bodies will do whatever it take to keep us alive. As this continues without treatment, it puts significant stress on our heart and cause many other health issues such as headaches, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, depression, memory lose, accidents and weight gain. In adult population, we call this sleep condition as sleep apnea. For adults, there is no cure but treatment is necessary and available.  For children, there is hope. Kids are growing and air way can be improved to prevent children having sleep apnea as adults. Children often are also not tested at the sleep center immediately like adults for diagnosis. Diagnosis is based on symptoms and signs.  Children having abnormal breathing during sleep is called sleep breathing disorder. Every child should be checked and every parent needs to understand what to look for to evaluate their child for improper breathing and lack of proper sleep. Research has indicated that 9 out of 10 children present at least one outward symptoms of Sleep disorder breathing. 

Here are list of some symptoms and signs to look for: - Dark circles under the eyes - Snoring - Frequent headaches - Arrested growth  - Daytime drowsiness - Restless sleep - Crooked teeth - Mouth breathing - Chronic allergies - Aggressive behavior

- Speech problems

- Bedwetting

- Poor school performance /attention - ADD/ADHD

All of these symptoms can be improved by improving airway. Airway is improved by correcting the position of the upper and lower jaw relative to each other and to the bones of the face. This promotes growth and development of the jawbones, better tongue position, and proper nasal breathing.  The jaws are naturally widened to the ideal width when the tongue is held in the proper place. As the tongue rests against the roof of the mouth, it naturally expands the upper and lower jawbones. This action, combined with certain oral appliance such as Healthy Start, will straighten the teeth naturally, using the gentle, gradual forces of incoming teeth to further grow the dental arches, the way nature always intended. Mouth breathing will also be corrected. Children who breathe poorly often have misalignment of the jaws and bite. 

Speak with us about it today.

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