Obstructive Sleep Apnea Diagnosis & Treatment

Does your child have daytime attention and behavior issues that are affecting their performance at school? Would you like answers as to why this is happening? It’s possible that your child has a condition called “obstructive sleep apnea syndrome” (OSAS). OSAS affects between 2 to 4% of all kids in the U.S., including plenty in the Fairfax County, VA, area. If you suspect that your child has OSAS, board-certified pediatric dentist Dr. Monamie Ghatak at Merrifield Pediatric Dentistry is highly qualified to perform reliable OSAS screenings for children up to age 18.

Symptoms of OSAS

OSAS oftentimes gets confused with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), resulting in it sometimes being misdiagnosed. And although snoring is a common symptom for kids with OSAS, it’s important to remember that between 10 and 20% of children snore on a regular basis. Some of the other possible signs of childhood OSAS include:

  • Frequent awakenings or restlessness when trying to sleep
  • Normal growth pattern disruptions, like below-average weight gain, because sleep apnea decreases the production of growth hormone
  • Bedwetting
  • Excessive daytime sleepiness
  • Sweating a lot at night
  • Frequent nightmares
  • Noticeable mouth breathing that looks like nasal congestion
  • Enlarged tonsils and adenoids, which may or may not cause dark circles on the face

Although most children with OSAS are not overweight, being overweight can make a child’s sleep apnea worse. Underlying medical conditions, like allergies, can also be a factor. During an OSAS screening in our office, Dr. Ghatak will carefully examine your child for signs of sleep apnea like enlarged tonsils and adenoids, along with mouth breathing.

What if My Child has Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

Based on the results of an initial screening, if Dr. Ghatak feels that your child has OSAS she will refer them to a pediatric ENT or sleep specialist for further testing. A pediatric sleep specialist may order a sleep study, or polysomnography test. If your child has OSAS, there are several reliable treatment options available that will allow them to live a normal, productive life once an initial diagnosis has been made.

Pediatric Sleep Apnea Screenings

If you suspect that your child has OSAS, what better way to have them screened than by the dentist they’re already comfortable with? Dr. Monamie Ghatak is a board-certified pediatric dentist in Fairfax County, VA, who is also highly qualified to perform sleep apnea screenings in kids up to age 18. Don’t let your child’s school performance suffer for another day. Instead, schedule a sleep apnea screening appointment with Dr. Ghatak today by calling Merrifield Pediatric Dentistry in Dunn Loring, VA, at: 571-293-1668!

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