Sometimes it is helpful to know what happens when your child is sleeping
We use a range of equipment to obtain a complete picture of how well your child sleeps. This equipment allows us to see how often they wake and why, their sleep patterns such as when they are dreaming, and how they are breathing through the night.
There will be several leads and sensors attached to your child’s body with a special glue and tape. It is completely painless, and the glue will wash away in the bath or shower.
These leads connect to our equipment which a nurse will monitor overnight using a computer. Our nurse will know if a lead falls off and may need to come in to fix this during the night. Your child won’t get tangled up in the leads and most children sleep well during these tests. Our nurses will also assist if your child needs to get up to go to the bathroom during the night.
Our team of highly trained sleep technicians, nurses and sleep physicians use the information provided by this equipment to identify and investigate any issues during your child’s sleep and how it may affect their body.
So what do leads, sensors and bands actually measure?
The leads that attach to your child’s head and behind the ears measure brain waves
(EEG). The special stickers next to your child’s eyes measure eye movements. There is also a sensor on the chin to measure changes in muscle tone. Together this information tells us when your child is asleep and if they wake up, even for a few seconds, during the night.
There will be a sensor and soft bands around your child’s chest and tummy. These measure chest movements and monitor breathing patterns.
There are smalls prongs (which look like straws) that will sit just into your child’s nose and a small stick called a thermistor sits just over the upper lip. These measures airflow in and out.
There is a soft sensor on your child’s finger with a red light to measure your child’s oxygen level and one that connects to a plastic ring on the tummy or arm to measure carbon dioxide.
There are also ECG leads place on the chest that measure your child’s heartbeat. The leg leads will indicate how restless they may be during sleep and show if there are consistent twitching or movements taking place. Body position, and audio-visual monitoring is also recorded overnight.
Read more about our overnight sleep study for children here.
How to prepare
We hope your child will sleep well during their stay with us. It is common for them to feel nervous however, our sleep rooms are a comfortable place to sleep with friendly staff who are there to help, and parents stay overnight too.We have found that discussing the procedure with your child and involving them in the process helps when it comes time to set up the equipment. Please arrive on time for your child’s appointment to avoid feeling rushed and to help your child relax. It can be helpful for you to follow what would otherwise be your child’s normal bedtime routine, ie read a book.
What should I bring with me?
You will need to bring all the things you and your child would normally need for staying away from home overnight. For example:
Pyjamas and a change of clothes
Something to read or relaxing to do before going to bed
Toothbrush and toothpaste
Your own pillow
A toy or special comforting objects from home that helps your child go to sleep
Any snacks or food to eat if you haven’t had dinner
If required nappies, wipes, feeds etc
Frequently asked questions
The specialist who reviewed your child will refer their details to GenesisCare in order to help us make the appointment. Once we receive the referral, we will contact you in order to collect any important paperwork and to arrange the sleep study. We will perform the study in consultation with your child’s sleep specialist, considering any special requirements provided. If you have not been contacted within the time period suggested by your child’s doctor you may either contact your doctor or GenesisCare directly to arrange an appointment.
In most cases your child should continue to take their regular medication, and you must bring this on the night of their sleep study as we will not supply this to your child.
Sometimes there is a requirement for your child to either take different medication on the night, or to stop taking certain medications prior to the overnight sleep study. Your child’s specialist will alert you if this is required, but we advise you that any changes in their medication must only be made under the direction of your child’s specialist.
The sleep study results will be ready for your child’s specialist within 5 working days of the study being performed. However, we recommend you phone the doctor to confirm they have arrived prior to your follow-up appointment.
Private Health Insurance: In most cases the costs of the sleep study are met by your health insurance fund and therefore there are no out of pocket expenses. You should check with your health fund if you have an excess for overnight admissions for your child and that your hospital cover is up to date.
Uninsured: If you do not have private health insurance then there is a small out of pocket cost. The rest of the fee will be covered by Medicare should you be eligible. This and other applicable restrictions may be discussed with you by GenesisCare staff.
Meet our sleep specialists
- Sleep and Respiratory Physician | Sleep Physician
We attract and retain some of the most experienced doctors in the country, who all have a passion for improving patient outcomes and specialise in the treatment of sleep and respiratory disorders.
To give you the best care we can, we have the largest group of privately practicing sleep and respiratory specialists in Australia.