Children’s Sleep Disorders

Children’s Sleep Disorders

It can be tough when you discover your child has a sleep disorder. The fatigue, mood changes and other symptoms can keep them from performing well at school or engaging in family activities. In other words, sleep disorders interfere with their ability to make of the most of being kids. CommonSpirit Health sleep experts are devoted to relieving children’s sleep disorders so they can get back to a life of energy, fun and adventure.

Some studies have shown that 50 percent of children with ADHD had signs of sleep-disordered breathing. When children feel tired, they may overcompensate and mimic some of the symptoms of ADHD, including moodiness, aggressiveness and becoming emotionally explosive. Treating sleep problems in children ages 5 to 10 may eliminate attention deficits or hyperactivity.

Research also shows that more than a third of children from kindergarten through fourth grade suffer from at least one sleep-related problem. At CommonSpirit Health, we empower kids to overcome their sleep disorders, from frequent nightmares and insomnia to more serious conditions like sleep apnea. See common conditions we treat.

Sleep guide

Here are some healthy habits to help your kids get more restful sleep.

  • Sleep needed: 12–14 hours
  • Naps: 1.5–3.5 hours
  • Maintain a daily sleep schedule and consistent bedtime routine.
  • The bedroom environment should be the same every night and throughout the night.
  • Encourage the use of a security object.
  • Develop a regular daily bedtime schedule.
  • Sleep needed: 11–13 hours
  • Naps: End by 5 years old
  • Nighttime fears may emerge
  • Maintain a regular and consistent sleep schedule
  • Follow through with a bedtime routine every night.
  • The bedroom environment should be the same every night and throughout the night. It should be cool, dark, quiet and without a TV.
  • Watch for difficulty breathing, unusual nighttime awakenings, chronic sleep problems and behavior problems during the day.
  • Sleep needed: 10–11 hours
  • Introduce healthy sleeping habits.
  • Continue to emphasize the need for a regular and consistent sleep schedule and bedtime routine.
  • The child’s bedroom should be conducive to sleep: dark, cool and quiet.
  • Avoid caffeine.
  • Watch for signs of chronic difficulty sleeping, loud snoring, difficulty breathing, unusual nighttime awakenings and frequent daytime sleepiness.
Children’s sleep study

Sometimes, in order to get a better understanding of your child's sleep issues, a sleep study may be suggested by your doctor. A sleep study is a simple way for doctors to monitor your child’s brain and body functions as they sleep. They can happen at your doctor’s office in comfortable rooms that can accommodate a child and a parent.

  • Avoid giving your child any stimulants such as caffeine.
  • Bathe your child prior to arriving to remove any hair products or body lotions.
  • Don’t allow your child to take any naps (if possible) the day of the study.
  • Give your child any regularly scheduled medications, if applicable.
  • Comfortable clothing for both your child and yourself to sleep in.
  • Current list of medications.
  • A special blanket or toy to ease your child’s transition.
  • A favorite VHS or DVD movie.
  • If your child is used to a bedtime snack, feel free to bring it along.