When Baby Forgets to Breathe

Cynthia Dermody
2
sleeping baby

Photo by JackieB33

Your new baby will do all sorts of things that delight you, as well as all sorts of things that will just scare you to death. A lot of them may be perfectly normal, new baby things that you just never knew about or expected. But some things might be more serious. Case in point: One mom in Newcomer's said her 8 week old forgets to breathe every once in a while.

"He takes a huge breath and makes a noise and the same face he makes if water drips on his face in the tub (which I heard is because babies automatically hold their breath)," says mrsjedwards. "Today he did it while he was sleeping sucking on a binky. He woke up startled, making the face and taking a huge breath."

mitch576 believes this is sleep apnea. It's actually common and treatable, but her now 6 year old, weighing only 34 pounds, almost died of this. As long as you recognize it, you'll be fine. So if you spot this in your newborn, mitch576 says you need to:

1. Bring him to an ENT and request a sleep study.

2. Request an apnea monitor to use at night and during naptime. An alarm sounds when he stops breathing so you can go snap him out of it.

3. Discuss different options to correct the condition when the baby is older, such as tonsillectomy.

mitch576's son had his tonsils and adenoids removed. They were completely obstructing his sinuses and his tonsils had swelled to the point where he wasn't able to swallow food.

If left untreated, apnea can lead to damage in the heart, brain and other major organs, and even death. It also accounts for a certain percentage of SIDS annually, mitch576 says.

Have you ever caught your baby "forgetting" to breathe? Did they have apnea?

 

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