Snoring in children; develops due to obstructions in the upper respiratory tract. As a result of narrowing in the respiratory tract, high-frequency vibrations created by the soft palate create the sound that occurs during snoring. Although snoring can be seen in all age groups, snoring in childhood is more worrisome. The problem of snoring can be seen equally in girls and boys. Sleep disorders affect the release of growth hormone, which is released during sleep. Therefore, it causes growth-development retardation.
Causes of Snoring in Children
1– Nasal Valve Collapse
It is the curve of the bone-cartilage tissue that should be normally flat and divides the nasal cavity into two. This problem makes it difficult for the child to breathe through the nose. One of the most common causes of nasal congestion is slippage in the nasal wall.
2- Nasal Polyp
They are allergic, infectious, growing formations in the nasal cavity due to mechanical reasons. As the polyp grows, it clogs the nasal cavity and sinuses. As a result of this, it causes decreases in the sense of taste and smell.
3- Choanal Atresia
It is the name given to the abnormal development of the posterior opening of the nose. Unilateral or double-sided nasal congestion may occur. The diagnosis is made by endoscopy.
4- Craniofacial Anomalies
When babies are born, their skulls contain many bones. These connections are called sutures. Sutures allow the skull to grow symmetrically as the brain grows. One or several sutures may be closed for any reason. In this case, the skull shows abnormal growth towards the side of open sutures. This condition is called craniosynostosis. Head-face anomalies in general; cleft palate and lip, vascular malformations, hemifacial microsomia.
5- Tongue Size
It is the overgrowth of the tongue through the dentoalveolar structures as a result. It is observed in vascular disorders, muscle disorders. Partial tongue enlargement can be seen in Down Syndrome and children with congenital hypothyroidism.
6- Muscle Disease
It occurs as a result of the disease of muscle fibers. Weakness, contraction, thinning and pains are felt in the muscles. It can develop depending on external factors as well as hereditary.
7- Enlarged Tonsils and Adenoids in Children
The lymph tissues of the upper respiratory tract are the tonsils and nasal flesh. They grow due to infections. Later, they may show shrinkage in later ages. When they overgrow, obstructions appear in the upper respiratory tract. This, in turn, causes snoring and apnea.
8- Excess Weight
With excessive weight gain, the fat tissue in the body increases at the same rate. The increase in adipose tissue in the neck area narrows the upper respiratory tract. This leads to an increase in snoring and apnea complaints.
Snoring Treatment in Children
The history of the disease to be taken by the physician in pediatric patients is important for diagnosis. The frequency and severity of the snoring in the child and the breathing stops in the child’s sleep are decisive for whether the operation will be performed or not. This can be determined by the family by recording the voice of the child while he is sleeping.
Snoring and apnea in the childt can cause behavioral impairment, daytime sleepiness, and decreased success in school. In these patients, night sweats, sleep irregularities, thirst and sleep-wetting problems are frequently seen. In the examination of snoring child patients, the size of the tonsils and nasal flesh is examined. Mouth-head-face scoring is performed and endoscopic examination and polysomnography are decided. Although medical and surgical methods are followed in the treatment of snoring in children, the tooth and jaw structure of the child is evaluated by the dentist.
Then, orthodontics is followed in terms of treatment. In advanced cases, surgical treatment is the most effective and frequently applied method.