Dr. D’Andrea describes the Sleep Center at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

I am Dr. Lynn D’Andrea. I’m a pediatric pulmonologist and the
Medical Director of the division of Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine at
Children’s Hospital and I’m a professor of Pediatrics at the Medical College of
Wisconsin. We live in a 24/7 world. You can watch television, movies, shop online 24/7. The lights can be on all the time and that can
have a huge detrimental effect on children’s sleep. I think what makes a pediatric sleep center
different from all other sleep study centers is really the people who work there. All I do day in and day out is take care of children. An infant sleeps approximately 20 hours a day, a younger school child needs about 10 to
12 hours of sleep, but even an adolescent needs 9 to 10
hours of sleep a night, and if you don’t get that much
sleep the easiest thing to see is that you’re
tired and grouchy the next day but again there are other things that
happen in your body when you sleep, so a growth hormone gets released
when we we’re in that really deep slow wave sleep. Your metabolism–if you don’t get enough sleep you’re
more prone to gain weight. Memory–when we dream, the things that we learned during the day get transferred over into long-term memory. And so, to be a good student studying hard
is very important but you also have to sleep so that you
can remember what you learn. When you look at a sleep study,
children’s brain waves look very different than an adult and you certainly don’t want to diagnose
them with something that they don’t have because their brain waves look different
or their breathing pattern looks different. And I think that’s something that a
pediatric sleep specialist has the expertise in. Our sleep
technologists in the Sleep Lab know how to work with children and how
to get all the stickers and leads on that you would need for an overnight sleep study. They know how to work with the whole
family so that the parents are able to stay with their child during the sleep study. After a bad day in clinic you wonder if anyone is getting any sleep out there but then the families
come back and they say you know we did what you told us to do, we did steps one,
two and three and now we’re happy to say our kids are
sleeping through the night, they look rested, they’re participating
in activities at school and at home and we’re happy family again.

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