Snoring In Children: When to Be Concerned

Getting adequate sleep is essential for ensuring children’s proper growth and development. Among the various reasons that are known to disrupt the sleep of kids, snoring is fairly uncommon. Unlike most adults, children rarely snore, and even then, it is not considered problematic. However, if the child is snoring frequently and severely, it can cause sleep disruptions, negatively impacting the child’s growth and well-being. However, before administering a snore solution to such kids, it is important to gain a better understanding of the reasons that make the child snore, its health impacts, and when parents should actually start worrying about the problem.

Reasons That Might Make a Child Snore

Different reasons might make a child snore while sleeping. Moreover, the frequency, loudness, and severity of snoring often vary from child to child. The most common reasons that make children snore include throat infections, allergies, asthma, and sleep apnea. In addition, snoring in children may be caused due to the presence of excess or obstructive tissue in the throat. Obesity and environmental pollutants may have emerged as other common causes that make a child snore. Thankfully, most aforementioned reasons cause infrequent snoring among children, which is deemed harmless. However, this might not always be the case, which is why it is important to learn about the effects of snoring and prevent it from reaching a dangerous stage.

Health Impacts of Snoring in Children

Enjoying a deep sleep lasting 9-10 hours helps in enhancing the physical and mental wellness of a child. However, if children develop the habit of snoring severely and regularly at night, it might disrupt their sleep cycle and impact their overall well-being. This is because severe snoring may be caused by obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which is often associated with difficulty breathing, also known as pediatric sleep-disordered breathing (SDB). The most common effects of snoring caused by OSA can range from impaired brain development to altered metabolism. In addition, excessive snoring can directly impact the academic performance of the child and may also be responsible for their behavior problems, besides causing issues like fatigue, cognitive issues, and high blood pressure.

When Should Parents Be Concerned

It is common for most children to snore lightly during the stages of deep sleep, especially after they have had a hectic day. However, to avoid the ill effects of snoring on the health and development of their child, parents should look out for the following warning signs.

• While it is common for children to snore occasionally one or two nights a week, doing so for more than three nights should be considered problematic. Regular snoring is often indicative of the fact that the child is not able to breathe properly while sleeping and needs medical attention.

• Many times, snoring is accompanied by children sleeping with their mouths open or paused and labored breathing. Some children may also be found gasping for air while snoring or experiencing frequent awakenings during the night, and this is a cause of concern.

• Problems like sleepiness during the day, sudden mood swings, difficulty in concentration, and lack of attention are indicative of significant snoring problems in children. In such cases, the parents may seek an appropriate snore solution after discussing the issue of their child with a sleep expert.

• Excessive snoring often tends to impact the quantity and quality of sleep that a child gets. This, in turn, hampers the healthy growth of a child and may lead to issues like morning headaches, bedwetting, below-average weight gain, obesity, and even retarded growth.

Finding The Right Solutions

Most children overcome the problem of snoring naturally over time. However, in some severe cases, medical intervention might be necessary to help the child breathe normally and eliminate the problem of snoring. Looking out for the above-discussed aspects associated with snoring makes it easier for parents to decide if and when they need to seek help. Parents should avoid using any snore solution for their child unless it is suggested by a professional pulmonologist. An expert doctor can help reduce the problem of snoring with minimal medication while ensuring negligible effects of snoring on the child’s health and development.   

Final Thoughts

Awareness of what to look for when it comes to snoring in children can make it easier to prevent the problem from escalating. In addition, it can prevent parents from worrying while ensuring the physical and mental well-being of their children.