Tag Archives: Sleep apnea

Diagnosing Sleep Apnea in Young Children Suspected of ADHD

Diagnosing Sleep Apnea in Young Children Suspected of ADHD More and more children ages 3 to 17 in the United States, as well as other countries, are being diagnosed with ADHD each year. US Statistics show a huge increase in kids under age 7 years being diagnosed and treated for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder particularly in the past three years. Just in the U.S. alone, the number of kids ages 3 to 17 diagnosed with ADHD has skyrocketed to in excess of 10,000,000 ( Yes…that’s ten million) and that number is expected to increase by 15 to 20 percent over the next year.   Likewise, during this same period, as many as 4 million or 40 percent of those children ages 3 to 17 years, will have been misdiagnosed with ADHD. Obviously, it’s very important that we diagnose ADHD and other behavior problems carefully and accurately in order to avoid wrongfully labeling a child with ADHD when indeed he or she is not ADHD. Currently, there are in excess of 95 medical, social, and environmental things that can cause ADHD-like behavior, confusing the diagnosis; causing misdiagnosis of ADHD. One of the most common seen in kids under age… Read the rest

Sleep Apnea Treatment may Prevent ADHD Behavior

Sleep Apnea Treatment may Prevent ADHD Behavior Most ADHD experts agree obstructive sleep apnea can cause the core symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity in children; inattentiveness, impulsivity and hyperactivity. It stands to reason the earlier we suspect, detect and treat obstructive sleep disorders, the more likely we can prevent the symptoms of ADHD in the first place and avoid the misdiagnosis of ADHD. Approximately 2.5 to 4 million children ages 3 to 17 years are misdiagnosed with ADHD in the U.S. each year. Of these, several hundred thousand will suffer the terrible stigma and discrimination of being labeled as ADHD and the side effects of unneeded medications-sometimes for years-all because their sleep-time breathing disorder went undetected and untreated. Much research is now being reported about the association of disorder breathing such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), and cognitive-learning problems and ADHD-like behavior disorders in children as young as age 3 years. A recent study presented at the Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies showed nerve based abnormalities that affected cognition in brains of children with OSA were reversible with treatment of the OSA. Studies had already shown a clear association between deficits in attention, executive brain functionRead the rest

How to Diagnose and Treat Sleep Problems that cause ADHD Behavior

How to Diagnose and Treat Sleep Problems that cause ADHD Behavior Problems sleeping have caused many kids and adults to be wrongfully labeled because of misdiagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Recently, many news and research articles have popped up confirming what behavior specialists have “known” for years; children and adults who have problems sleeping are more likely to have behavior problems such as ADHD. It just seems it took a long time for everyone else to come to grips with the association between a “good night’s sleep” and normal or appropriate behavior. I considered the quality and quantity of sleep to be such a big part of a child’s or adult’s ability to function the next day; I dedicated an entire chapter to the topic in Mistaken for ADHD. In my last article; Problems sleeping cause ADHD Behavior in Children and Adults, we discussed how any “thing”; medical or otherwise, that caused a child or adult to have problems sleeping could also cause signs and symptoms of ADHD. As you’re sure to remember, ten year-old Leslie was a perfect example of how a child could be misdiagnosed with ADHD-when in fact suffering from disordered sleep. Disorders of… Read the rest

Problems sleeping cause ADHD Behavior in Children and Adults

Problems sleeping cause ADHD Behavior in Children and Adults Any “thing” that causes a problem sleeping can also cause a child or an adult to have signs and symptoms of ADHD. If you take a moment to think about it, it only makes sense that sleep disorders-regardless of the cause-can cause behavior often misdiagnosed as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Ten year-old Leslie was a perfect example of a child misdiagnosed with ADHD-who in fact was suffering disordered sleep. Leslie just seemed to be a tired, sleepy little girl when she first showed up in my office with her mom. Her teacher had urged her parents to have Leslie evaluated for ADHD, because “She had so many symptoms of ADHD behavior.” Ironically, her symptoms were poor concentration, poor attention span, and failure to complete assignments, falling asleep in class, failing grades, and acting as if she was in a daze. She was definitely not hyperactive and reportedly rarely impulsive. Several of these are indeed symptoms of ADHD, but not enough to make a true diagnosis. That’s what made Leslie’s behavior so confusing to her parents. She was tired….all the time, not just at school. Her parents… Read the rest

Sleep Problems in Children May cause ADHD Misdiagnosis

As we discussed in our last post, sleep-disordered breathing problems, such as sleep apnea, may cause inattentiveness, concentration problems, impulsivity, and aggressive behavior-all symptoms found in ADHD children, teens and adults. Likewise, children deprived of sleep may become bullies, be victims of bullies, display hyperactivity, and confound and frustrate parents and teachers with angry outbursts and discipline problems. How do we make sure a child is not ADHD and will not be mislabeled as bipolar, as a bully, or as a conduct disorder child? Here are a few tips to help your child get the best evaluation: • Be sure your doctor gets a very clear idea of his or her behavior, not only at home, but at school, at athletic and sports events, on social outings and at school • Watch your child sleep for at least 4 hours on two separate occasions, so you can describe his or her sleep patterns to your doctor • Ask teachers to provide a detailed written description of what happens when your child misbehaves • Urge your child’s doctor to do a complete examination to detect things that might cause disordered sleep…enlarged tonsils, sinusitis, allergies, chronic ear and throat… Read the rest

Sleep Disorders in Children, Bullying and Aggressive Behavior

Falling asleep in class may be due to a sleep-disordered breathing problem, such as sleep apnea, may cause inattentiveness, concentration problems, impulsivity, aggressive behavior and ADHD misdiagnosis. Many teachers have shared their past experiences in dealing with children who fall asleep during class and how these children and teens can disrupt the classroom and inflict pain and suffering on others in the class. Sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) problems include obstructive sleep apnea, central sleep apnea and excessive snoring caused by enlarged tonsils and chronically stopped up airway passages. We know that kids who don’t sleep well at night are prone to daytime sleepiness, often fall asleep during early classes, and many times act just like children with ADHD. These kids are often referred for ADHD evaluation, have confusing symptoms and many times are misdiagnosed and mislabeled as ADHD. Unfortunately, ADHD medications and other ADHD treatments can make these children’s behavior much worse, causing them to be placed and more and stronger drugs to control their symptoms. A study published in the May issue of Sleep Medicine showed a relationship between daytime sleepiness, aggressive behaviors; such as bullying, disobedience, discipline problems and poor conduct; and sleep-disordered breathing-snoring. In this study,… Read the rest
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