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Toddler Snoring: Causes and Solutions

My son snores.

I don’t mean a sweet little wiffle here and there when he’s sick, I mean homeboy saws logs on a nightly basis and it’s getting worse. I started feeling a little concerned a few months ago and then lately, the snoring is such that I can hear it from another room. When we went to the doctor for his ear infection, she looked down his throat and said, “WHOA. Those are some big tonsils!” I asked her if they had anything to do with his snoring and she was all, “YOU THINK?!”  (Except while it sounds snarky in print, she was very funny and personable.) I mentioned it to my mother (who is a nurse) and she said that my older brothers had such huge tonsils and adenoids that they had to be removed.

Huh. So I guess it runs in the family? Alongside his daddy, who also snores despite being fit and trim and only 30 years old.

So is this toddler snoring unhealthy? And what am I supposed to do about it?

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  • image-3290 1 of 14
    image-3290
    Click through to get more info about your toddler's nighttime sounds!
  • What causes snoring? 2 of 14
    What causes snoring?
    Snoring occurs when you can't properly move air through the nose or mouth while you sleep. It is noisy and can often point to other medical conditions.
    Source: Web MD
  • Sometimes it’s just a cold 3 of 14
    Sometimes it's just a cold
    Snoring tends to be worse with colds and respiratory infections as breathing is labored and more forced. The snoring should stop as the illness leaves.
    Source: KidsHealth.org
  • It could be obstructive sleep apenea syndrome (OSAS) 4 of 14
    It could be obstructive sleep apenea syndrome (OSAS)
    This is a dangerous condition where the child repeatedly stops breathing throughout the night.
    Source: KidsHealth.org
  • It is important to get checked out 5 of 14
    It is important to get checked out
    Snoring/OSAS can hinder brain development and cause behavioral problems in your sleep-deprived toddler.
    Source: Web MD
  • Consult a pediatrician 6 of 14
    Consult a pediatrician
    He or she may recommend that your toddler be examined by an ENT (ear-nose-throat doctor). The ENT will take a closer look at tonsils, adenoids, and sleep habits.
    Source: KidsHealth.org
  • Try catching it on video 7 of 14
    Try catching it on video
    This way the pediatrician or ENT can actually hear the snoring and labored breathing.
    Source: our family pediatrician
  • Is he sleepy throughout the day? 8 of 14
    Is he sleepy throughout the day?
    This may be a sign that your toddler is not sleeping as well as he should or waking frequently in the night - both symptoms of snoring.
    Source: Los Angeles Times
  • Enlarged tonsils or adenoids 9 of 14
    Enlarged tonsils or adenoids
    Tonsils and adenoids help keep bacteria at bay, but sometimes they're so large that they cause snoring and sleep depravation. Removing them has a 75% success rate of stopping toddler snoring.
    Source: What to Expect
  • Seasonal allergies may be the cause 10 of 14
    Seasonal allergies may be the cause
    Talk to your pediatrician about medication and be sure to change the bed linens and wash loveys frequently.
    Source: KidsHealth.org
  • Socioeconomic status 11 of 14
    Socioeconomic status
    Studies have found that toddlers in low socioeconomic households or more prone to chronic snoring.
    Source: Los Angeles Times
  • Breastmilk to the rescue again 12 of 14
    Breastmilk to the rescue again
    Breastmilk is a great non-invasive way to help reduce snoring (although it may not work in all cases). In a recent study, the toddlers who were breastfed extendedly did not snore while those who weren't often developed the condition.
    Source: Los Angeles Times
  • Weight loss 13 of 14
    Weight loss
    Weight loss is often the cure for OSAS in both toddlers and adults. Toddlers can be overweight, so it is something to dicuss with the pediatrician.
    Source: Los Angeles Times
  • Snoring can cause behavioral problems 14 of 14
    Snoring can cause behavioral problems
    The sleep depravation caused by snoring can lead to a shorter attention span, headaches, hyperactive, and depressed.
    Source: Los Angeles Times

Sources:

KidsHealth.org

WebMD.com

Los Angeles Times

.

More by BA:

Toddler Ear Infections: Causes and Solutions

Fantastic toddler bath toys that help with learning.

How to make a cheap and custom toddler chore board

An interview with a toddler dad

Hilarious shirts to mock & shame the T-Rex.

How to be an awesome employer to parents

Week in the Life.

Beth Anne writes words & takes pictures at Okay, BA! You can also find her on the Twitters & Facebook.

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