What Is Functional Abdominal Pain Like
The tummy pain is typically around the belly button. Your doctor finds no signs or symptoms that point to a physical condition causing your child’s pain. They are well between episodes and are not losing weight. They may be quite anxious about the pain and about the effect that it is having. Most children experiencing RAP will have functional abdominal pain.
Common Causes For Stomach Pain
So abdominal pain is something we see very often and there’s a whole bunch of reasons why kids can have abdominal pain. They can have abdominal pain because they’re overeating we see that a lot usually around holidays, like Halloween, they eat too much candy. Christmas, they eat too much of the good yummy stuff that we see around the holidays. They can also have gas pains if they’re drinking too much soda. They can have indigestion from spicy foods. For example, I see a lot of kids that eat hot Cheetos and then they come in and tell me that their stomach hurts. The hot Cheetos are the cause of that stomachache.
Quite often as well, I see kids coming in for stomachaches because of constipation. They’ll say their stomach hurts around their belly button and then when you start asking questions about their bowel movements, it turns out they haven’t gone for awhile or when they go, it’s hard to get out. So ask your child if they have a stomachache, if they’ve pooped recently.
We are also seeing a stomach virus going around and a lot of kids will come in and say they have a stomachache, but they haven’t had the vomiting or diarrhea because the stomachache just started that day and the parents are concerned. But the vomiting and diarrhea start within 24 hours of the stomachache.
How Is Abdominal Pain Diagnosed In Children
A doctor will ask you questions about their pain. They will put your child at ease before carefully examining them. Sometimes tests will be needed to find the cause of abdominal pain in a child. These include:
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Probable Causes Of Rap
- Functional bowel disorder: most children with RAP have no detectable physical cause. In this case, a diagnosis of functional bowel disorder will be made. If other parts of the body are also affected, it is called functional bowel syndrome.
- Irritable bowel syndrome . Usually more commonly seen in adults, IBS can affect children too.
- Functional dyspepsia – this is indigestion with no physical abnormilty of one part of the upper gut.
- Abdominal migraine: this is the cause in 1-2 in every 10 children with RAP.
- Bladder infections.
- Coeliac disease: this results from an immune reaction to gluten. It affects around 1 in 100 people in Northern Europe and the USA. It can cause recurrent tummy ache made worse when food containing gluten has been eaten.
- Lactose intolerance: this is a common digestive problem where the body is unable to digest lactose, a sugar mainly found in milk and other dairy products. Symptoms usually develop within a few hours of eating food that contains lactose. They include wind, diarrhoea, bloating, tummy pain and feeling sick . Lactose intolerance comes on with age and is more common in older children and adults, affecting around 10% of white Europeans and 90% of South Asian, African or South American people.
- Giardia infection: this is a digestive infection which doctors used to believe was mainly caught overseas – but which we now know is also found in the UK. Symptoms include wind, diarrhoea, bloating, tummy pain and feeling sick .
What Is Growing Pain
Growing pains are episodic musculoskeletal pains that occur only in children or teenagers in the years of growth .
Growth pains are indicators of physical and psychological changes occurring within the body in the developing years of a child.
These pains are usually benign in nature and occur mainly at night.
They are mostly felt as muscle cramps in one or both legs. These pains are typically idiopathic in nature since the exact causes are unknown. These pains normally go away once the growth phase stops.
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Remedies For Growing Pain In Adults
While they arent really growing pains in adults, there are some remedies that can help. These include:
- Hot Compresses Use a heating pad or a warm towel to wrap your legs and relieve pain. Use them for 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off to avoid burning your skin.
- Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers Try anover-the-counter pain reliever or anti-inflammatory at bedtime to help you get to sleep easier.
- Massage If you dont have a blood clot, massage your legs at bedtime to ease any muscle pain.
- Stretching You may stretch your muscles before exercise, but it is equally important to stretch your muscles before you go to bed. This can really help a lot with restless leg syndrome.
Questions About The Pain
- What it feels like – how severe it is and what sort of sensation is felt.
- When it began, how often it comes and how long it lasts for.
- Whether it is getting gradually worse, is variable, or is always the same.
- Whether it makes your child feel that they need to go to the toilet and, if so, whether going to the toilet helps.
- Whether it is affecting daily activities – school, or fun things, or both.
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Sharp Jabbing Pain In The Upper Right Abdomen
When mixed with digestive juices from the liver and pancreas, bile acids stored in the gallbladder break down the partly digested food as it enters the small intestine. Gallstones occur when there is excess secretion of cholesterol by the liver. You experience pain because your body attempts to pass the gallstones through the narrow biliary duct.
Abdominal Pain In Children
There are several causes of abdominal pain in children. Parents often rush to healthcare professionals to get the best possible help. It is hard to diagnose in the case of children. When you diagnose the problems, no further medical tests are required. Usually, the situation gets better within hours or a few days without any causes. With an apparent reason, it is easy to manage the treatment. If the problems continue, contact your doctor immediately.
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Overview Of Growing Pains
The years of growth of a child are marked by distinct physiological, structural and psychological changes. Few of these changes are difficult to cope with and require definite solutions. Growing pain in general causes lots of hazards and at times disturbs the normal pattern of life. According to the American Academy of Pain Management, nearly 18% of girls and 13% of boys in their growing years complain of pains and related ailments. Pediatricians and health units are working on finding remedial measures to prevent growth pain from becoming a major factor behind the drop in performance and productivity.
When To See A Professional
So when should you call your child’s health care provider? Call immediately if the pain is severe and has lasted more than an hour or its constant and has lasted more than two hours. Or if you are worried about appendicitis or if the pain actually extends into the scrotum or testicles of boys. You may be advised to go to the children’s emergency room for further testing that may not be able to be done in your doctor’s office to evaluate for those serious causes that may need a surgeon.
So abdominal pain is something that again, we see very often and there are so many things that could cause it. By working with your child’s doctor, you can figure out what the cause of the pain is and a plan to help your child.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Recurrent Abdominal Pain In Children
RAP is recurring pain in the tummy which has continued, on and off, for three months or more.
In RAP that is not caused by a physical condition, the pain is usually around the belly button. There is often a headache. Feeling sick and even being sick are fairly common. However, your child is well between attacks and is otherwise healthy – growing well and, generally eating and drinking normally. There are no ‘alarm symptoms’ .
The patterns of RAP that doctors describe, and which are NOT associated with a physical condition, are: irritable bowel syndrome , functional abdominal pain, functional abdominal syndrome, functional dyspepsia and abdominal migraine.
Growing Pains In Adults
Growing pains usually stop by the time a child reaches puberty. However, pains that resemble growing pains can continue into adulthood.
Growing pains themselves are harmless, but the pain may also be a sign of another condition. Other conditions that can cause similar pain include:
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Is Recurrent Abdominal Pain The Same As Chronic Abdominal Pain
Most doctors use the term ‘recurrent abdominal pain’ to mean that your child has experienced tummy pain on and off, over three months or more. Many doctors now use the term ‘recurrent abdominal pain’ as a label only for those cases of on-and-off tummy pain for which no other medical cause has been found.
Do Growing Pains Make You Taller
Theres no evidence growing pains make you taller. Theyre not connected to rapid growth or a growth spurt in any way.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Growing pains are deep cramping or aching pains in your childs limbs, specifically their legs. The pain typically affects both legs and occurs at night. Although these pains are called growing pains, theres no firm evidence that suggests growing pains are caused by your childs growth. More likely, the pain is caused by increased physical activity during the day. Treatment for your childs growing pains includes managing the symptoms with massage, heat, stretching and mild pain relievers if necessary. Contact your childs healthcare provider if the pain worsens or if other symptoms develop.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 08/20/2021.
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What Other More Common Serious Conditions Could Be Mistaken For Growing Pains
Toxic synovitis is a common cause of hip pain in children that can often be mistaken for growing pains or a pulled muscle. Toxic synovitis is a temporary condition that occurs due to inflammation of the inner lining of the hip joint. This inflammation may cause pain or stiffness in some children. Toxic synovitis is much more common in boys and most often affects preschool to early school-aged kids, but younger kids can develop it as well.
Unlike the symptoms of growing pains, children with toxic synovitis will often experience leg or hip pain in just one leg, and this pain is more constant throughout the day rather than just in the evening. Other symptoms include limping and reluctance or refusal to bear weight on the limb. In babies, they may cry in situations where their hip joints are being moved, such as diaper changing, or they will refuse to move the limb.
By itself, toxic synovitis is not a serious condition, but the biggest risk in missing its diagnosis is the potential for missing more serious conditions like certain forms of childhood cancer, or a case of . While septic arthritis is uncommon, its a surgical emergency when it does occur.
What Causes Growing Pains In Adults
People stop growing a few years after they go through puberty. For girls, this is usually around ages 14 or 15. For boys, its usually by age 16. However, you can continue to have symptoms that resemble growing pains into adulthood.
The following are potential causes of growing pain sensations in adults:
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Is It Growing Pains Or Something More
Author:Andreas AarsvoldComments Off on Is it Growing Pains or Something More?
Many kids can relate to the unpleasant experience of growing pains they come on at night and can cause sharp, shooting, as well as dull and nagging pain. But what people may not know is what causes them, why do they affect some children and not others, and most importantly, when should parents be concerned that they could be something much more serious?
Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness
Delayed onset muscle soreness is muscle pain that happens several hours to several days after exercise. It can range from muscle tenderness to severe pain.
The cause of DOMS is unknown, but its most common when starting a new activity or returning to strenuous activity after a period of time off. The duration and intensity of exercise also affect your likelihood of developing DOMS.
DOMS can cause a decrease in your range of motion and your ability to put full weight on your leg. It may cause you to put more stress on other parts of your leg, which can lead to injuries.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , massaging the affected leg, and reducing your activity for a few days can all help you recover from DOMS.
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What Causes Growing Pains
Theres no known cause of growing pains, but theres no evidence that growth causes the pain. There are several theories:
- Researchers believe increased physical activity can lead to overuse of your childs muscles, which can cause pain.
- Some studies show that children with growing pains have a lower pain threshold. These children are more likely to have headaches and abdominal pain as well.
- Many children with growing pains have very flexible joints and have flat feet. Being hypermobile can cause growing pains.
- One study found that children with growing pains have less bone strength due to low vitamin D levels.
How You Can Help
As a parent, there are a few things you can do to help reduce growing pain symptoms for your child:
- Massage the area
- Stretch the legs
- Use heating pads or warm cloths in the painful areabe careful of hot temperatures here, however, and do not do this during sleep due to burn risks
- Supply painkillers like ibuprofen or acetaminophendo not give aspirin to your child, as it has been linked to Reye syndrome, a rare but serious illness in children
Growing pain symptoms may reach a level where you should call your doctor. In some of these cases, pain symptoms may not even necessarily be due to growing pains specifically, but they should still be examined by a doctor. These situations include:
- Morning pain or long-lasting pain that wont go away
- Swelling or redness near a joint or specific area
- Pain resulting from an injury, such as a fall
- Loss of appetite or weight loss
- Limping or trouble walking
Your doctor can offer further recommendations when it comes to managing your childs growing pains.
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Symptoms Of Growth Pain
Growth pain symptoms are most common in children between 4-8 years of age. In the initial stage, growth pains are relatively benign and occur only in the legs. But these symptoms slowly radiate to the other parts of the body as well. Hence the following symptoms must be observed to facilitate diagnosis in the early stage-
- Episodic pain in the legs along with joint inflammation
- Reddish discoloration of the affected area
- General body ache and occasional fever
- Extreme fatigue and weakness
- Difficulty walking, running or swimming
- Occasional limp
If Everything Is Physically Normal What Causes My Child’s Pain
Experiencing pain when there is no underlying physical problem is surprisingly common. It can be difficult for children, who may feel as though their friends and family will think they are inventing the pain or that they are suspected of imagining it. It is important to explain that you know that their pain is real and that it needs to be managed and treated just as much as if it came from a broken bone.
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Management Of Ibs In Children
The symptoms of IBS can often be treated with a combination of the following:
- Adjustments to diet, including eating smaller meals more often, or eating smaller portions, and eating meals that are low in fat and high in carbohydrates.
- Medications .
- Probiotics are helpful for some children.
- Increased exercise.
Certain foods and drinks are thought to cause IBS symptoms in some children, such as milk products, caffeine drinks, artificial sweeteners and gas-producers such as cabbage and onions. It is not a good idea to exclude everything at once: keeping a food diary can help work out whether any foods are triggers.
Dietary fibre can lessen constipation in children with IBS but it may not help with lowering pain.
Medications for IBSMedications are sometimes used in childhood IBS. They include:
- Fibre supplements and/or laxatives when there is constipation.
- Antidiarrhoeal medicines to reduce diarrhoea in IBS .
- Antispasmodic drugs to try to reduce bowel activity and, therefore, pain .
- Probiotics: live micro-organisms such as bifidobacteria improve symptoms of IBS in some children.
- Rarely, antidepressants are used to modify the pain but these medicines can have powerful side-effects so are only used in children by specialists.
Growing Pains In Back
While back pain is a common ailment for both adults and active children, the available literature regarding growing pains does not include pain in the back. Therefore, back pain in children may be a sign of another issue.
It could be poor posture or muscle strain, but it may also be a sign of a more serious underlying disorder, especially if the pain lasts for more than a few days or gets progressively worse. See your doctor if that is the case.
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