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School Absences & Fatigue

What you need to know

  • Excessive absences are not the norm, but may occur depending upon the individual's medical issues. 
  • Sleep abnormalities are common in individuals with PWS.
    • These sleep abnormalities include: reduced REM (rapid eye movement), altered sleep architecture, oxygen desaturation and both central and obstruction apnea.
  • Many students with PWS have daytime sleepiness.
    • This may be the result of altered breathing patterns in the hypothalamus, poor muscle tone, and weak chest muscles.  Upper airway obstruction may also contribute to sleep abnormalities.
    • If people with PWS snore, sleep walk, or have persistent morning headaches, they should be evaluated for sleep apnea.
  • Lack of sufficient sleep can lead to behavior issues and temper tantrums.

What you can do

  • Focus on improving nighttime sleep.
  • Schedule daytime naps or afternoon rests if needed.
  • Some children respond to a change in scenery, i.e. taking a walk.