Excess weight may cause sleep disorder in children

Excess weight may cause sleep disorder in children Obesity has been associated with a range of health problems, and a new study suggests that some of them may already start in childhood in individuals with high body mass index (BMI).

Researchers from Penn State University College of Medicine have published a study which suggests that waist circumference and BMI are consistent risk factors for all severity levels of sleep disordered breathing (SDB) in children.

The study used data from 700 children between the ages of 5 and 12 years. Each child was evaluated by a physical exam and monitored for nine hours in a sleep laboratory. It found that 1.2 percent of the children had moderate SDB (an apnea/hypopnea index of five or more breathing pauses per hour of sleep), 25 percent had mild SDB (AHI of at least one but less than five) and 15.5 percent had primary snoring.

“Because SDB in children is not just the outcome of anatomical abnormalities, treatment strategies should consider alternative options, such as weight loss and correction of nasal problems,” says principal investigator Dr. Edward O. Bixler.

The study was published in a June issue of the journal Sleep.

Those who would like to lose excess weight and maintain a healthy body mass have a range of natural health resources to choose from. They include exercise, low-fat diet and nutritional supplements.