A Toddler with Sleep Apnea

sleep study

Sleep Study

A Toddler with Sleep Apnea

toddler with sleep apnea


My first born was a needy baby. Sleep was always a struggle. He craved touch and wanted to be hear us at all times. We dealt with night terrors from a young age, and co sleeping was the only thing that worked. My second born was even worse, a toddler with sleep apnea.

When we got pregnant with our second baby, I didn’t think things could get worse on the sleep front. Boy was I wrong.

The first year

Beckett was born in August of 2016. His sleeping habits started out wonderfully, but somewhere in that first year, sleep went down hill.

Since our first born was such a poor sleeper, I didn’t think much of it. It wasn’t until about month after his first birthday when we ended up in the hospital with RSV. I didn’t even know a toddler with sleep apnea was a possibility.

You can read our story here. Long story short, a trip to the ER turned into a transfer in the ambulance to the children’s hospital where we spent a few nights. The diagnosis was RSV and reactive airway disease.

Sleep Apnea

After a couple of colds and continuous breathing issues, I started realizing that this all could be connected to his lack of sleep.

Having no experience with asthma, sleep apnea, or RSV, I really didn’t think any of it through until then. A toddler with sleep apnea was a new experience for me.

The first sign

The first thing I noticed was how he would breath at night. He was still nursing to sleep, and back to sleep. Every time he would wake to nurse, I would latch him willingly – almost like I knew he needed to clear his throat. It was those pauses in his breath – “breathing interruptions” that was waking him up.

He was also waking up coughing throughout the night, even though he wasn’t sick.

I mentioned this to his pediatrician and she referred us to an ENT.

Sleep Study

He went through a sleep study, which you can read more about here. He was diagnosed with moderate/severe sleep apnea.

Adenoid Removal

toddler adenoid removal

The ENT recommended we remove both tonsils and adenoids, but we opted for the adenoids since he was under two.

Did it help?

Absolutely. It’s been about a year now and he has slept so much better! His second sleep study showed that he still had mild sleep apnea, but nothing that required immediate attention. When he gets sick he still struggles, otherwise he sleeps much better now. When I sleep with him I don’t notice any issues with breathing, which is amazing, considering what he came from.

Recommendations from the ENT

Our ENT recommended treating him for allergies if he continued having issues. Since we haven’t seen any issues, we haven’t made any changes. I do plan on keeping an eye on his tonsils since they are slightly large as well.

I do think that removing them in the near future would help his situation as well.

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