Sleep Apnea

A child with sleep apnea lays in bed.

When your child doesn’t sleep well at night, is constantly cranky or seems overly sleepy during the day, your child may have a sleep disorder such as sleep apnea. At Nemours, our sleep medicine experts are board-certified pediatricians and pulmonologists (lung doctors) with special training in evaluating the causes of, and treating sleep disorders such as sleep apnea in children.

Learn More About Sleep Apnea in Children

Most children have a restless night every now and then — but when it becomes a habit and your child is not getting enough sleep or quality sleep because of sleep apnea, it could lead to other physical and mental problems. Sleep apnea in children occurs when kids stop breathing during periods of sleep.

At Nemours, our team of sleep medicine experts will take a complete medical history of your child and perform a complete physical examination.

An overnight sleep study — polysomnography — conducted at one of our Sleep Centers, will measure your child’s quality, quantity, and breathing patterns during sleep to determine if your child has sleep apnea.

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Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children, Wilmington

1600 Rockland Road
Wilmington, DE 19803
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For Appointments: (302) 651-4200

U.S. News & World Report Best Children’s Hospitals: Pulmonology
What to Bring
  • photo ID
  • medical and pharmacy insurance cards
  • preferred pharmacy name and phone number
  • names and dosage of all medications, including over-the-counter medication, your child is currently taking
  • guardianship and custody papers, if a legal guardian rather than a parent accompanies your child
Returning Patients
  • Patient Presents Without Legal Guardian (PDF)
    English | Spanish
    Note: A parent or legal guardian must be with a child for a first visit.
Sleep Medicine Form
Items to Bring to the Sleep Center
  • loose-fitting, two-piece pajamas, t-shirt and elastic waistband shorts or a diaper and t-shirt for infants
  • blanket and pillow will be provided, but you may bring your own, too
  • stuffed animals
  • toothbrush
  • nebulizer or ventilator (if needed)
  • any food items or drinks your child may need during the night — bring all equipment and supplies if tube feeding is required
  • any required medications (in the original containers) your child may need to take at bedtime or during the night
Forms & Resources
Sleep Medicine Form
Returning Patients
  • Patient Presents Without Legal Guardian (PDF)
    English | Spanish
    Note: A parent or legal guardian must be with a child for a first visit.
Resources for Patients & Families
Instructions for Friday and Saturday Evening Sleep Studies

Although we schedule sleep study appointments throughout the week, we receive many requests for Friday and Saturday night appointments.

If you have a Friday or Saturday night appointment, an advanced nurse will:
  • contact you on Friday morning (by 10:30 a.m.) to confirm your child’s appointment (either for Friday or Saturday night)
  • ask if your child needs to take any medications during the sleep study time
  • make sure your child is not sick
  • check to see if you have any question and go over last minute instructions

If you do not receive a call from us by 10:30 a.m., please call us
at (302) 651-5242 or (302) 651-5056

Where to Go for Your Child's Sleep Study Appointment
For your sleep study appointment, please arrive by 7:30 p.m.

Due to construction at the hospital, we ask that you please enter through the Playground Entrance. Please stop by the reception desk and get a photo ID badge made for the parent staying overnight. Someone will escort you to the Sleep Center on the 3rd floor.

Typically, the study is completed around 6 a.m., and a report will be completed and sent to your child’s referring doctor.

As a parent, you know how crucial it is for your child’s overall well-being to get a good night’s sleep. In Wilmington, Del., our board-certified pediatric sleep medicine specialists at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children know the value of a good night’s sleep, too. It not only allows your child’s body to rest from the day’s activities, but plays an important role in your child’s mental and physical development. That's one reason why Nemours specialist are trained to diagnose and treat sleep apnea in children.

Our team of board-certified sleep medicine specialists and pediatric pulmonologists (lung doctors), and registered sleep technologists, have advanced training in pediatric sleep medicine and treating sleep apnea in children.

To diagnose sleep apnea in children, we can schedule a sleep study evaluation conducted right here in the hospital at our outpatient Sleep Center. This study will help our specialists get to the bottom of what’s going on, and address ways to help your child start sleeping and feeling better again.