Pediatric Sleep Medicine

The Pediatric Sleep Centre at American Hospital, Dubai offers a comprehensive solution to all sleep problems in children.

Many children grow up with unrecognized problems of sleep deprivation leading to various long-term health problems such as attention deficit, behavioral problems, poor memory and long term irreversible pulmonary hypertension. Poor nighttime sleep in children can also be exhausting for parents, particularly if they have other siblings to care for. Each child is different, and some need more sleep than others, so it’s important to do what you think will suit you and your family best. Children with long-term health conditions may also find it more difficult to sleep through the night.

We have American and British board-certified sleep clinicians and technologists to manage various childhood sleep problems. Doctors at American Hospital, Dubai can advise you about how to help your child to sleep better, and help you work out the best way to manage pediatric sleep disorders, whether they are related to pre-existing conditions or not. If necessary they can refer you to a supportive team of psychologists who have experience of sleep problems and can advise on the best way forward.

General Tips to Promote Good Sleep:

A couple of minor lifestyle changes can help promote good sleep, and prevent lethargy, mood swings, and other discomforting effects that are caused by sleep deprivation:

  • Ensure a comfortable environment with the correct temperature, as being too hot or cold can disturb your child’s sleep
  • Turn off anything that stimulates your child an hour or so before bed, such as TV, tablet, or mobile phone. This also prevents exposure to blue lights emitting from the gadgets that are bad for your child’s sleep
  • Some children are afraid of the dark so keeping a nightlight on can help
  • Establish a bedtime routine for your children and make them stick to it, including weekends and holidays
  • Spend some time with your child settling them in their beds either by reading the books, telling stories, or talking to them about their daily routine
  • Some children settle better with a comforter – a favorite toy, cloth, or dummy
  • If your child keeps getting out of bed, quietly take them back as many times as necessary without becoming impatient or angry

Pediatric Sleep Clinic:

At American Hospital, we do a comprehensive medical evaluation of a child’s sleep to understand the underlying sleep issues using an evidence-based approach. We also help you set up a healthy sleep routine and assist you in sleep training young children with our team of pediatric pulmonologists and child psychologists specializing in behavioral sleep medicine.
Depending on the underlying problem, your child might be recommended a diagnostic sleep study, and further management plan in accordance with the progress.

Sleep Studies:

To understand how your child sleeps, we may recommend one or more of the following tests to evaluate and monitor heart rate, oxygen saturations, and some brain waves:

  • Overnight Sleep Study or Polysomnogram (PSG): A very detailed study, carried out to record brain waves, eye movements, muscle tone, breathing, oxygen levels, heart rate and rhythm, and leg movements.
  • Home cardiorespiratory screening tests: These can be performed at home or in a hospital setting.
  • Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT) for the diagnosis of Narcolepsy through recording a child’s brain and body activity during the day to provide a measure of sleepiness
  • Overnight Oximetry: It’s a basic screening test recommended to children with sleep issues.

Treatments for Children Sleep Disorders:

While advising on practicing sleep-promoting lifestyle changes is the first line of treatment, doctors may recommend a non-invasive “Positive Airway Pressure (PAP) Therapy” to manage serious sleep disorders among children.

Positive Airway Pressure (PAP) Therapy, administered to treat obstructive sleep apnea, delivers air to a child with the help of a mask to keep the airway open during sleep. This is done to identify the right PAP pressure that a child with sleep apnea requires for better breathing during sleep. PAP is segregated into the following two categories:

Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) delivers air into the upper airway at an optimal pressure to enable a child to sleep properly.
Bi-level Positive Airway Pressure (BiPAP) uses varied air pressure levels for breathing in and out.

Schedule an Appointment:

If you have concerns regarding your child’s sleep, we invite you to schedule a consultation with one of our Pediatricians at American Hospital’s Pediatric Sleep Center by using our secure online form or calling us +971 43775500.

Doctors Panel of Pediatric Sleep Medicine

Omendra Narayan

Consultant Pediatric Pulmonologist

English, Hindi, Urdu

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