Loss of sleep in children has a detrimental impact on relationships, education, and behavior. Often the ruined rest is due to obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which can be challenging to identify. A group of researchers at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario have created a new tool that can be used to diagnose sleep apnea in children.
Researchers have known that adults who have a neck with a large circumference are more likely to receive a diagnosis of OSA. The challenge was to develop a set of standards to compare neck circumferences for children aged 6 to 17 years.
Pediatricians can use this standard to evaluate children at risk to develop OSA, which leads to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, emotional control problems, loss of focus, and poor behavior. Ask your pediatrician to measure your child's neck to ensure that he or she is not above the 95th percentile.