One of the most recognisable symptoms of obstructive sleep apnoea is snoring, even though many patients ignore this sign or fail to recognise it as a symptom of a more serious condition.
Other symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing may include:
- excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS)
- poor concentration
- morning headaches
- depressed mood
- night sweats
- weight gain
- sexual dysfunction
If your patient presents with any of these symptoms, it’s important to talk to them about SDB and recommend a sleep test.
However, these symptoms of obstructive sleep apnoea may not relate to sleep apnoea, so it’s important that an accurate diagnosis is made.
Symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing in children
Sleep-disordered breathing also affects up to 3%1 of children, with common symptoms including:
- habitual snoring (which affects about 3.2 – 12%1,2 of children)
- noisy breathing/increased work of breathing
- pauses in breathing with
noisyresumption of breathing
- chronic mouth breathing
- behavioural problems, such as hyperactivity and aggressiveness
- restless sleep
There are a number of risk factors that could also predispose children to
- Adenotonsillar hypertrophy
- Craniofacial malformation
- Congenital syndromes (e.g. Down’s, Marfan’s, Pierre Robin Sequence, Achondroplasia)
If symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing are observed in a child, it’s important to either refer the child to a Paediatric sleep physician and/or recommend a sleep test to determine whether he or she has a breathing disorder.
Find out how to request a sleep test.