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Understanding the Link Between Bedwetting and Sleep in Children

added on: January 12, 2024

Parenthood is a journey filled with joys and challenges, and one common challenge many parents face when raising a family is bedwetting. What does a Madison dentist like Dr. Ashley Lee know about wetting the bed? As it turns out, this distressing concern (for both kids and parents alike) these nighttime issues can have potential ties to something called obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). While the reasons behind bedwetting can vary, an essential factor to consider is the quality of a child’s sleep, especially when it comes to conditions like this.

Join the team at My Rivertown Dentist as we unlock some of the mystery behind the connection between wetting the bed and sleep apnea.

How to Define Bedwetting and Sleep Apnea in Madison Children

Bedwetting, also known as nocturnal enuresis, is a common occurrence among children, with various potential triggers such as:

  • Delayed bladder maturation
  • Genetics
  • Stress
  • Hormonal imbalances

It’s important to note that recent research has shown a strong correlation between bedwetting and disrupted sleep patterns, particularly in children experiencing obstructive sleep apnea.

Obstructive sleep apnea is a condition characterized by repeated pauses in breathing during sleep due to an obstruction in the upper airway. The interruptions in breathing can:

  • Fragment sleep
  • Reduce quality of rest
  • Cause unnecessary bedwetting

In children, this obstruction is often caused by enlarged tonsils or adenoids. Even if they are not fully conscious of these interruptions, they can prevent your child from entering deep sleep stages, affecting the body’s ability to regulate functions like bladder control during sleep. As a result, bedwetting incidents may occur more frequently in these children compared to those with uninterrupted sleep.

How the Body Reacts to Sleep Apnea and Bedwetting

The presence of OSA can lead to increased nighttime urine production or changes in child’s regulatory mechanisms within their growing body, contributing further to bedwetting occurrences. The stress and discomfort caused by sleep disturbances can aggravate the emotional toll on children, leading to increased anxiety or frustration related to their bedwetting incidents.

Seeing the Symptoms of Sleep Apnea in Children

We work closely to educate parents and Madison children about sleep apnea and bedwetting. Dr. Lee can tell you that identifying obstructive sleep apnea in children can be challenging as symptoms may not always be overtly linked to sleep issues. It’s important to be on the lookout for symptoms such as:

  • Loud snoring
  • Observed pauses in breathing during sleep
  • Restless sleep
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Behavioral problems like ADD or ADHD
  • Difficulties concentrating

Issues like these could very well be indicative of underlying sleep disorders like OSA.

Possible Steps to Take to Make Your Child Feel Better

Parents concerned about their child’s bedwetting and potential sleep issues should consider consulting with My Rivertown Dentist and Dr. Lee. A pediatrician or a sleep specialist may recommend a comprehensive evaluation, which might include a sleep study to assess the child’s sleep patterns and determine if there’s an underlying sleep disorder like OSA. Treatment for obstructive sleep apnea in children often involves the removal of tonsils or adenoids, which can alleviate the obstruction in the airway. Positive airway pressure therapy (CPAP) or other interventions might also be suggested based on the severity of the condition.

When a child is showing signs of sleep apnea, it is important to understand what dynamics may be playing a part in their airway dysfunction. There are even Myofunctional Therapy techniques that can be incorporated into a child’s treatment. They’re designed to use neuromuscular repatterning so that your child enjoys an improvement in breathing, swallowing, and muscle function. This creates more space for healthy adult teeth to grow and to help keep their bite right!

Trust My Rivertown Dentist in Madison to Help You Help Your Family

The good news is that we can treat everyone from kids to adults. Sleep apnea is usually curable in kids and treatable in adults. Dr. Lee works closely with an orthodontist, an ENT, and Sleep Specialists to determine what treatment would be most beneficial to each patient. Even better,

Dr. Lee recently obtained Diplomate status with the American Academy of Dental Sleep

Medicine, making her a Preferred Sleep Medicine Provider. The requirements to become a Diplomate are rigorous, requiring extensive training, case studies, and tests to achieve this rare level of expertise.

Overnight sleep studies, CPAP therapy, and oral appliance therapy are frequently covered by most medical insurance plans, including Medicare. Let us check for you as we start developing a treatment plan for your family! Schedule a consultation today to learn more about how we can help you understand the connection between bedwetting and sleep apnea in Madison and how it’s affecting families.