Children and Adults

Snoring in Children: Causes,Treatment and Prevention

What is Snoring  or Noisy Breathing?

Paediatric sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) is a general term for breathing difficulties during sleep. Snoring is a noise formed by vibration of the uvula and soft palate in the back of the throat.

Anytime someone falls asleep, the muscles of the throat relax and the airways at the back of the nose and in the throat become narrow. This can cause snoring or noisy breathing.


Fun Facts About Snoring

  • SUS stands for Socially Unacceptable Snoring:  SUS refers to snoring that is so loud, it wakes up other people or prevents them from sleeping. 
  • SUS is named as the third most common reason for divorce, behind infidelity and finances. In 1997, one Iranian man filed for divorce due to his wife’s non-stop snoring when it was later discovered that as it turns out she had drugged him early in their marriage to prevent him finding out.
  • Some celebrity who  snores  include  the 6 times World Best Footballer,Lionel Messi, Prince Harry,Ashley Tisdale, Marilyn Manson,  Teddy Roosevelt and NBA Basketball All Star fame Shaquille O’Neal. They are just some of the many people who snore around the world.
  • In United state of America alone, about  37 million people snore on a regular basis
  • Snoring is hereditary, although  way of life  and physical health contribute to do whether or not one will  snore, 70% of snorers also have another snorer in their family. Alcohol and some drugs have tendency to  cause of snoring. 
  • The   noise level of snoring is  between 50-100dB.This is s like having a food blender right next to your ear!
  • United Kingdom citizen,Jenny Chapman  is the loudest snorer in Great Britain and she has been married for more than 30 years, she snores at 111dB, a sound that is like a working  washing machine or louder than a low-flying jet. She said  never realised this until going to a sleep clinic in 2009 and found her snores were louder than any sleep specialist had encountered. 

110dB is at the average human pain threshold, which also meant her husband would sleep in a separate room around 5 nights every week.

  • Three times Golden Globe Winning actor, Tom Cruise snores is apparently so loud, that  he ended up converting a spare room in his house into a “snoratorium.” 
  • Some unconventional methods to reduce your snoring include the following : 
  • Putting  on  flight socks during the day.Sleeping in new pillows.

               Introducing a pocket where  a tennis ball will be attach to the pyjama shirt.

               Taping your mouth shut.

               Enrolling in  singing lessons.

  • Academy Award winner,Matt Damon tried hypnosis to reduce his snoring, after it started affecting his own sleep!
  • One third of women snore, while pregnant women have a higher tendency to snore. Only compares to 40% of all men who snore.
  • The word “snore,”  was originally called “snort”  meaning animal noise. Shakespeare was the first to introduce “snore,” as a verb in reference to people during his play “The Tempest” in the phrase “Thou dost snore distinctly; there’s meaning in thy snores.” 

               Types of Snoring

When snoring becomes more frequent and interrupts sleep, it can indicate the presence of sleep-disordered breathing (SDB). Sleep-disordered breathing ranges in seriousness.

Primary Snoring :

  • This is also called Simple Snoring or Habitual Snoring This happen when a child snores more than two times per week but does not have other noticeable symptoms or associated health issues.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) :

  • This is a condition characterised by continuous  failure  failures in a child’s breath during the night. Those failures are known as apneas, they normally takes place dozens of times per night when the airway becomes blocked. OSA can cause break up sleep and is connected with negative impacts on physical health, mental health, learning, and child general behaviour.

How Regular  Is Snoring In Children?

Primary snoring is thought to affect between 10-12% of children.

 Studies approximate that 1.2-5.7% of children have Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). 

Among all the children diagnosed with sleep-disordered breathing, around 70% are affected by primary snoring.

It is hard to know the exact figures for snoring and sleep apnea. Parents may not always notice their child’s snoring of its frequency and seriousness.

 Causes of Snoring 

Snoring occurs s when air unable to move easily through the airway at the back of the throat. As a person inhales or exhales, tissue around the airway vibrates, creating an audible noise.

Different factors can make blockages of the airway and generate  snoring in people. In children, some of the most common risk factors for snoring are the following :

  • Large or swollen tonsils and adenoids: The tonsils and adenoids are located near the back of the throat, and are important part of the immune system. If they are naturally bigger or expand because of infection, they can can block the airway and cause snoring. This is about the  most commonest  cause of sleep-disordered breathing in kids.
  • Obesity: Studies have found that children who are overweight are more likely to snore. 
  • Congestion: Cold-like signs can lead to congestion that prevent the smooth flow of air, and infection may disturb the tonsils and adenoids.
  • Allergies: Outbursts of allergies can cause inflammation in the nose and throat that can make it difficult to breathe and increase the risk of snoring.
  • Asthma: Asthma may prevent normal breathing, and if it causes partial blockages of the airway, can give rise to snoring.
  • Environmental tobacco smoke (ETS): This is  often called  Secondhand Smoke, it can affect breathing and has been correlated with a higher risk of snoring in children.
  • Contaminated air: Low air quality or excess contaminants can pose a challenge to normal respiration and may influence a child’s chances of frequent snoring.
  • Shorter duration of breastfeeding: Research has found an association between snoring in children and reduced duration of breastfeeding. The exact reason for this is unknown, but it may be that breastfeeding helps the upper airway develop in a way that cuts down on the likelihood of snoring.

Obstructive sleep apnea is another important risk factor for childhood snoring. It is typical for children with obstructive sleep apnea to snore, including with gasp-like pauses in breath. While most children with OSA snore, not all children who snore have OSA.

When Should Parent Be Worried about Their Children Snoring?

Parents who are worried about their child’s snoring should talk with a paediatrician. Though some snoring can be normal, various signs can indicate the possibility of Sleep Breathing Disorder.

Anytime, your child sleeps, their body rests and reinstate its energy level changing both physical and mental well-being. Noisy snoring becomes a medical issue when it is connected with unusual breathing and cut in sleep. If your child is not getting enough sleep because of SBD, this may give on to any of the following :

  • Bedwetting
  •  Obesity
  • Morning headaches
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Lack of  concentration in learning.
  • Hyperactivity disorder or Diagnosis of attention-deficit(ADHD)
  • Below-average weight gain. 
  • Bluish Skin.

It is important to note that these factors can be indicators of Sleeping Breathing Disordered (SBD), but not all children who snore and have these issues necessarily have a more serious breathing condition.

Treatment And  Possible Solutions To Snoring

Treatments include surgery for obstructive sleep apnea and snoring.

 If surgery is too risky or unwanted, the patient may sleep every night with a nasal mask that delivers air pressure into the throat This process  is known as Continuous Positive Airway Pressure or CPAP.

 Patients can also reduce snoring by losing weight, cutting down or eliminating alcohol and other sedatives at bedtime and avoiding sleeping flat on their backs.

Nonsurgical intervention with positive pressure ventilation is also a treatment option for OSA.

Obesity is a risk factor for sleep obstruction. Weight loss, in addition to other therapies, in overweight or obese children can help improve sleep.  

Outdoor and indoor allergies can also cause nasal congestion and mouth breathing impacting sleep in children. Make sure your child receives proper medication for allergies and see an allergist if needed.

Once doctors know what’s wrong, a person can be treated for it, usually with lifestyle changes, sometimes medicines, or even surgery, if necessary.

Solving a snoring problem allow the entire household breathe and sleep a little comfortably!  How do you prevent snoring among your kids  in your household? Any great ideas that work? Please feel free to let us know  in the comment  section below.

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