Children with sleep apnea cannot be treated the conventional way with a CPAP device and dentists cannot treat children with an oral sleep appliance, as their teeth and jaws are still growing, says Dr. Mark Levy, dentist in Columbus, Ohio.
There are many children with sleep apnea and these children snore excessively, don't sleep well, are fatigued in the morning, all of which lead to other social issues.
Dr. Levy says that treatment is usually limited to removing tonsils and adenoids for obstructive sleep apnea in children. With this surgery, change is seen almost immediately, where the bedwetting stops and grades improve. The problem, Dr. Levy notes, is convincing pediatricians to write the request for an ENT evaluation for the surgery, as most insurance companies require patients to have a certain number of strep or ear infections before surgery is approved.
The only other treatment option is to do a palate expansion with an orthodontist, to give the tongue more space. Dr. Levy also believes that some children are often misdiagnosed as having ADHD, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, as the personality symptoms of sleep apnea and ADHD are similar.
Dr. Mark Levy has a dental practice in Columbus, Ohio and more information about his practice can be found here. Dr. Levy is a leading sleep expert with Sleep Better TV, providing online, on-demand, sleep disorder breathing video content.