Sleep-disordered breathing (SBD) is a growing crisis among our youth. There’s evidence that the increases in ADHD, anxiety, behavior problems, and the decreases in academic achievement and overall health among are youth may be linked to how they sleep. There are plenty of medications and interventions that treat the symptoms of sleep deprivation in childredn, but too few dental and medical practitioners understand how to treat the underlying issues.
I am Dr. Meghna Dassani. I’ve been a practicing dentist for over 20 years. One of my special interests is how oral health relates to the whole-body health of my patients. I look beyond ‘healthy smiles,’ and want to help my patients achieve ‘healthy minds and bodies’ as well.
In recent years, I’ve been studying how the physical features of the mouth can affect how children breathe and sleep. Sleep is so important to the health and development of our kids, and when their tongue, lips, or palate are interfering with their ability to breathe well and sleep deeply, their health, behavior, and academics all suffer. As a dentist, I’m in a unique position to observe, diagnose, and treat the sleep issues that are keeping my pediatric patients from growing up to be healthy, happy young adults. I want to share what I’ve learned with you. If you work in the medical or dental fields, I want to give you more tools to diagnose and treat your patients’ underlying sleep conditions. If you’re a parent, I want to give you the information you need to find a dental practice in your area that can help your child.
Sleep is so important, and there’s nothing more stressful than trying to help a child get adequate sleep. Let’s work together to improve these kids’ lives.
She is an active member of many professional organizations, including the American Dental Association, the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine, and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. She is the author of the book Healthy Sleep, Happy Kids: The Parent’s Guide to Sleep Apnea and Kids. She teaches courses on sleep apnea and dentistry to practitioners across the United States and has pioneered the use of the Healthy Start system of oral appliances to treat sleep apnea in young children.
Are you a dentist who’s noticing an increasing number of patients with ADHD, anxiety, and learning difficulties? Do parents complain that their kids are somehow always wired and yet also sleep-deprived? Are you seeing an epidemic of mouth-breathers, narrow palates, and swollen tonsils and adenoids? With training, you can help these families correct sleep-disordered breathing so you’re your pediatric patients can experience better sleep, better behavior, better academic achievement, and better physical and emotional health. You can coordinate care through your office, offer important therapies, and improve the health of the palate, sinuses, and jaws with corrective appliances.
As a mother, I know that there is nothing in the world more frustrating than being unable to provide your child with a good night’s sleep. If your child is mouth-breathing, wakes up tired, and has trouble with emotional control during the day, you may feel helpless. Individual specialists focus on specific symptoms, but no one may be seeing the big picture.
I am passionate about giving parents the tools they need to help their kids. Let me educate you about how you can help your child. If you’re in the Houston area, I may be able to coordinate your child’s care. If you live in another part of the country, I can help connect you with professionals who will help you get to the root of your child’s problems. Your child needs sleep to grow, learn, and develop.
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