Q: My 4-year-old doesn't sleep through the night. Even if I go to her room and sleep with her, she tosses and turns and wakes up. What should I do?

A: Since you say that even when you're in her bed she doesn't sleep soundly, you should talk to the pediatrician, who may refer you to a sleep specialist to see if there's a medical reason for your child's restless sleep. The problem could be sleep apnea, a condition in which a child stops breathing very briefly many times during the night, and wakes up coughing and gasping. Sleep apnea in children is usually related to enlarged tonsils and adenoids, and the most common treatment is to remove them. You also mentioned that your daughter tosses and turns a lot, which could be a sign of periodic limb movement disorder. This condition involves your child's legs having small, rhythmic jerks throughout the night, waking her up. If this is the problem, there are medications that can help, or your child may need iron supplements.

Copyright 2009

Answered by