Pediatric Sleep & Breathing Solutions in McKinney, TX

Helping Your Child Breathe Easy and Sleep Soundly 

Most parents are unaware that the underlying cause of behaviors like that cute snore, ADHD indications, or even bed-wetting at night could be warning signs of childhood sleep apnea. Sleep apnea during childhood can be difficult to recognize—too often the symptoms are misidentified, ignored, or seen as simply acting out or misbehavior. Left untreated, more serious developmental issues and health problems can result from sleep-disordered breathing during youth.


Call 1-972-542-9129 to learn more with one of the best sleep dentists in McKinney, TX. Dr. Paul Lawrence has helped countless patients of all ages reclaim their quality sleep.

What Are Childhood Airway and Breathing Disorders?

Childhood airway and breathing disorders encompass a range of conditions that disrupt a child's normal breathing during sleep. These disruptions can cause brief pauses in breathing, shallow breathing, or even complete airway obstruction. Left untreated, these disorders can significantly impact a child's sleep quality, overall health, and development.

Some common childhood airway and breathing disorders include:

  • Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA): The most common, OSA occurs when the upper airway becomes blocked during sleep, causing breathing pauses.
  • Enlarged Tonsils and Adenoids: Swollen tonsils and adenoids can obstruct the airway, leading to snoring and breathing difficulties.
  • Upper Airway Resistance Syndrome (UARS): Similar to OSA, UARS involves partial airway obstruction but with less severe breathing pauses.
  • Chronic Rhinosinusitis: Inflammation of the nasal passages and sinuses can contribute to breathing problems during sleep.

Signs of Pediatric Sleep Apnea

While some children with sleep apnea may not exhibit any symptoms, there are several common signs to watch for:

  • Snoring: Loud, frequent snoring, especially with gasping or choking sounds, can be a red flag.
  • Restless Sleep: Frequent tossing and turning, difficulty falling asleep, or waking up often could indicate disrupted sleep due to breathing problems.
  • Daytime Sleepiness: Excessive daytime fatigue, difficulty concentrating, or irritability may indicate poor sleep quality.
  • Behavioral Issues: Hyperactivity, inattention, or problems with mood regulation can sometimes be linked to sleep apnea.
  • Bedwetting: Bedwetting that starts after a period of dryness may be a sign of sleep apnea in children.
  • Morning Headaches: Frequent headaches upon waking could be related to sleep disturbances.
  • Facial Features: In some cases, narrow facial structures or a small jaw may contribute to sleep apnea.

Testing and Diagnosing for Early Childhood Sleep Apnea

Early diagnosis of sleep apnea is crucial for ensuring your child receives proper treatment and avoids potential health complications. If you suspect your child might have sleep apnea, your pediatrician can perform a preliminary evaluation based on your observations and their medical history.

Further testing may involve:

  • Sleep Study: A polysomnography records your child's brain activity, breathing patterns, oxygen levels, and muscle movements during sleep, providing a detailed picture of their sleep quality and any breathing disturbances.
  • X-rays or CT scans: These imaging studies can help identify anatomical abnormalities like enlarged tonsils or facial structure issues that might contribute to sleep apnea.

Treating Pediatric Sleep Apnea Cases

Treatment options for pediatric sleep apnea depend on the underlying cause and severity of the condition. Some common treatment approaches include:

  • Lifestyle Modifications: Maintaining a healthy weight, practicing good sleep hygiene, and avoiding allergens can be helpful for some children.
  • Medications: Nasal corticosteroids may help reduce inflammation in the nasal passages and improve breathing.
  • Surgery: In some cases, removing enlarged tonsils and adenoids can open the airway and improve sleep quality.
  • Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP): This therapy uses a mask to deliver constant air pressure to keep the airway open during sleep. While uncommon in young children, CPAP may be necessary in severe cases.

By working with your pediatrician and a sleep specialist like Dr. Lawrence in McKinney, TX, you can develop a personalized treatment plan to address your child's sleep apnea and ensure they get the restful sleep they need for optimal health and well-being.

SleepRight McKinney: Your Partner in Healthy Sleep for Kids

At SleepRight McKinney, we specialize in diagnosing and treating sleep apnea and other breathing disorders in children. We understand the importance of quality sleep for your child's development and well-being. Our team can help:

  • Identify the cause of your child's sleep problems through comprehensive evaluations
  • Provide effective treatment solutions to ensure a good night's rest
  • Improve your child's overall health and well-being

Frequently Asked Questions

How common is sleep apnea in children?

Many people believe that obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) only affects adults. However, as many as 10 percent of children in the United States suffer from this serious sleep disorder. Many cases of childhood sleep apnea have been misdiagnosed as ADHD, as the two share similar symptoms.

The American Academy of Family Physicians Foundation reports that sleep apnea is most likely to occur in children between the ages of two and eight years old. If you notice signs of sleep apnea in your child, schedule an appointment with a sleep dentist to seek a proper diagnosis. 

What does sleep apnea sound like in children?

There are several audible signs of sleep apnea, such as coughing, choking, wheezing, and snoring. While snoring doesn’t always indicate the presence of sleep apnea, it may be a sign of another breathing disorder.

What causes sleep apnea in children?

The cause of sleep apnea is typically difficult to diagnose, especially in children. Some possible causes of sleep apnea in children include:

  • Cleft palate
  • Obesity
  • Low muscle tone (hypotonia)
  • High muscle tone (hypertonia)
  • Narrow facial structure
  • Small jaw structure
  • Enlarged tonsils

How can treating sleep apnea and other sleep disorders benefit my child?

Sleep apnea treatment can be beneficial for your child’s physical and mental health. A key factor in your child’s development is quality sleep, and sleep apnea may disrupt it. Treating sleep apnea will help your child to:


  • Reach their optimal height and weight
  • Combat childhood obesity
  • Receive the proper amount of quality sleep
  • Combat daytime headaches and fatigue
  • Focus and pay attention in school

Schedule Your Consultation with Dr. Lawrence Today!

At SleepRight McKinney, we understand the importance of a good night's sleep for your child's development. Our team of specialists is dedicated to providing comprehensive evaluations, effective treatment plans, and compassionate care to ensure your child breathes easier and sleeps soundly.

Contact SleepRight McKinney today to schedule a consultation! You can reach us by phone at (972) 542-9129. We proudly serve the communities of McKinney, TX, and surrounding areas including Frisco, Fairview, and Princeton.