Miami and Coral Gables, FL
Millions of Americans, both adults and children, exhibit symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). This condition affects one’s concentration, impulse control, organization, and memory. ADHD can be a frustrating condition to deal with, not to mention society’s stigma towards it and to those who suffer from the disorder.
What if children suffering from ADHD were suffering from another disorder instead, like a sleep disorder? Dr. Vatsal Thakkar, a practicing psychiatrist who treats patients with ADHD, has set a powerful argument for physicians to consider sleep disorders as a potential cause when evaluating patients for ADHD. Dr. Thakkar has identified many symptoms of ADHD as being similar to symptoms of sleep disorders, for both children and adults. Symptoms of sleep deprivation and ADHD in children are nearly indistinguishable. Physicians commonly diagnose ADHD in children when they exhibit symptoms of lack of focus or agitated, excitable, or impulsive behavior. Unfortunately, a child with these types of behaviors often struggle with social and intellectual development, which causes problems in their relationships with peers or adults. What if ADHD is not the actual cause of these symptoms after all?
Large-scale studies of more than 11,000 children have found that those with sleep-disordered breathing exhibited many of the same behaviors associated with ADHD. Research also concluded that children were 40-100 times more likely to exhibit behavioral problems if suffering from sleep-disordered breathing. Although studies have linked sleep-breathing disorders to be a major cause of behavioral issues in children, the medical field has yet to pay closer attention to this fact before jumping the gun on diagnosing ADHD. The American Academy of Pediatrics conducted an assessment on pediatricians. The results of the assessment found that less than one in every six pediatricians advised parents on sleep disorders of their child. What is even less surprising is that one in every four adults failed to mention their child’s lack of sleep to the physician. Who should you talk to if your child is not sleeping well and exhibiting behavioral issues? The dentist.
Believe it or not, but now more than ever, dentists are playing a key role in diagnosing and treating sleep-disordered breathing, even in children. The reason is that obstruction of the airway often causes sleep-disordered breathing. At Miami Designer Smiles, we can design and create a simple device to help reposition the lower jaw, allowing for adequate airflow through the airway. This simple device has proven to be effective in treating sleep-disordered breathing for both adults and children. If your child is exhibiting behaviors associated with ADHD, give us a call for a consultation. Our drug-free approach to treating sleep disorders could make all the difference in your child’s behavior. Miami Designer Smiles welcomes patients of all ages from Miami and Coral Gables, FL.