Although snoring is common in children, it can be a sign of a serious sleep disorder and should be investigated.
- Routine childhood health screening should include questions about sleep and snoring.
- Snoring is a cardinal symptom of obstructive sleep apnoea but can be soft and sound like heavy breathing in sleeping children.
- Snoring most nights, pauses in breathing during sleep and an increase in work of breathing are the symptoms pointing most strongly towards a diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnoea in children.
- Children with obstructive sleep apnoea are often hyperactive and have difficult behaviour during the day. They may also have poor attention and/or poor concentration.
- Polysomnography is the gold standard for the investigation of sleep disorders in children and adults.
- Adenotonsillectomy is the treatment of choice for most children with obstructive sleep apnoea.