Hearing loss

Your child?s health is paramount to you. You fret and worry and love, that?s what parents do. And more so if your child suffers from breathing difficulties.

Why is my child suddenly snoring? Should I be concerned?

Snoring is typical in children, and is prevalent in around 12% of all children. Of those children who snore, only 1% to 3% will experience sleep disordered breathing. But do have your pediatrician check for tonsillitis or adenoids, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Thirty years ago, most tonsillectomies in children were performed for recurring infections (about 90%), today only about 20% are done for infection, while 80% are now performed for sleep disordered breathing. According to recent government statistics, 300 to 400,000 tonsillectomies are performed yearly in children and adolescents.

Children who have enlarged tonsils are almost four times as likely to experience symptoms of breathing difficulties while sleeping. Adenoidectomy ? the removal of lymphoid tissue located behind the nasal passages that can cause breathing difficulties ? is performed at a rate about 1.5 times as high in boys as it is in girls, but the rate of tonsillectomies ? the removal of two small glands located in the back of your throat that can treat breathing problems, such as heavy snoring and sleep apnea ? for girls is almost twice that for boys.

What if my child has a cleft palate, or lip?

The CDC?s recent estimates show that yearly in the United States, more than 2,600 babies are born with a cleft palate and more than 4,400 babies are born with a cleft lip, regardless of whether or not they have a cleft palate. It is recommended that cleft palate repair be done as soon as possible, but usually within the first year and a half of life, and surgery to repair a cleft lip is generally recommended within the first 12 months of a child?s life, as it may assist in improving breathing quality.

The most important thing to remember as a parent is that there is help out there and there are options. The last decade has seen so many advances when it comes to treating breathing difficulties, from the repair of facial and neck injuries to complete airway reconstruction. Try to breathe easy and know your child will get the best help available.