Obesity and Sleep Apnea

Dr. David Bailey specializes in the ear, nose, and throat, and he says there is a direct linkage between obesity in children and sleep apnea syndrome.

Dr. Bailey said, "The most common cause of sleep apnea in children is generally enlarged tonsils and or adenoids and, in most cases, it will fix the problem.  But, there are many other kids that are extremely overweight who have sleep apnea just because of their size, and they may get treatment of tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy, as well as usage of C-PAP machine."

Lots of overweight children come through his doors and, he says, if children lost weight, they wouldn't have as many problems when they sleep.

Dr. Bailey said, "We do see quite frequently really overweight kids as young as five years old and, many times, they wake up feeling tired.  They want to sleep during the day. Many kids also present bed wetting, which can also be a symptom of this."

His simple solution? Eat less.

"As far as children go, eat three or four square meals a day, and do not let the children snack while they're playing their video games or while they're watching TV," Dr. Bailey said.

For obese children who suffer from sleeping problems, Dr. Bailey says that could change with some healthy decisions.