Dental treatment for paediatric obstructive sleep apnea

Paediatr Respir Rev. 2015 Jun;16(3):174-81. doi: 10.1016/j.prrv.2014.11.002. Epub 2014 Nov 11.


Paediatric obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is common and its prevalence is expected to increase due to the rise in childhood obesity. Recent research has shown that many children, both syndromic and non-syndromic, who exhibit mouth breathing as a result of upper airway obstruction, may also exhibit dentofacial anomalies. Although adenotonsillectomy and continuous positive airway pressure have been classically proposed as the primary treatment modalities for paediatric OSA, there are significant limitations to both therapies. Therefore newer treatment modalities are needed. Current research has focused on emerging dental treatment options for paediatric OSA, such as rapid maxillary expansion, oral appliances and distraction osteogenesis. However, there are few randomized trials assessing the effectiveness of these novel dental therapies for paediatric OSA, and hence further research is required to advance the field.

Keywords: Distraction Osteogenesis; Obstructive sleep apnea; Oral appliances; Rapid maxillary expansion.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Craniofacial Abnormalities / complications
  • Craniofacial Abnormalities / therapy*
  • Dental Care for Children / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mouth Breathing / complications
  • Oral Surgical Procedures / methods*
  • Orthodontics / methods
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / complications
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / therapy*