Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Thursday, March 23, 2000
GED Testing planned
GED Testing will be held from 5-9 p.m., Tuesday, April 4 and Wednesday,
Registration is scheduled from 1-5 p.m., Monday, April 3, at 320 S.
Oak Street, Suite 4.
For more information call 445-5535.
Sleep apnea in children is treatable
For many children, snoring can be more than a noisy nuisance.
"Unfortunately, we don't have as good of an idea about snoring in children
as we do in adults," said Dr. Max Hirshkowitz. "We do know, however, that
it can run the range from being relatively minor to being a symptom of
Obstructive sleep apnea is a serious life-threatening condition that
can trigger various abnormalities or developmental delay. It occurs when
enlarged adenoid glands or tonsils block the upper airway passages during
sleep, making it difficult for the child to breathe.
Not every child who snores, however, is showing signs of sleep apnea.
In adults, only 20-30 percent of those who snore suffer.
In general, snoring occurs when the floppy tissue in the airway relaxes
and begins to vibrate. Many times the noise is caused by an enlarged soft
palate and uvula, the lobe hanging from the back of the roof of the mouth.
"Anything that limits the size of the airway, such as breathing through
the mouth, sedating medications or chronic inflammation of the nose can
increase snoring," Hirshkowitz said.
He does warn, however, that even "simple" snoring carries some risks.
The constant vibration can beat down throat tissue, leading to infection.
The multiple sleep disturbances can also keep a child from achieving a
truly restful state.
"At school, these children will often wiggle around in their seats or
doodle, all very subtle signs of sleepiness,' Hirshkowitz said. "They become
wound up, are unable to control their fidgeting and eventually stop paying
Snoring can affect more than a child's ability to make the grade at
school. Many also suffer from weight problems, morning headaches and frequent
Although parents might try to tune out their child's earsplitting habit,
Hirshkowitz recommends getting a professional evaluation as soon as possible.
A check-up can help diagnose any serious conditions.
"Many of the adults we treat for sleep apnea have symptoms that can
be traced back to childhood," Hirshkowitz said. "Sleep problems can have
a huge effect on schoolwork and parents should not wait until the ill effects
surface in the classroom."
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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Copyright 2000 by Pecos Enterprise