Children’s Growing Pains

Children’s growing pains are an aching or throbbing pain, usually in their legs and less commonly in the arms. They’re the most common type of pain in children.  You may notice your child holding or rubbing their legs, or they may seem grumpier than normal.

Growing pains usually occur in children between 2 and 12 years old.. They mostly start in late afternoon or early evening and are gone by the morning. The pain during the night can be severe enough to wake your child up. They don’t occur as much during the day, but if they do, its intermittent. Some children can also experience abdominal pains or headaches in addition to growing pains.

 

Causes of children’s growing pains

The cause of growing pains is unknown, and because bone growth is not actually painful. The most likely cause of growing pains is muscle pain caused by overuse during the day. This overuse can come from normal childhood activity, such as running around and playing games, which can cause soreness to the muscles.

 

How to treat children’s growing pains

One of the best ways to soothe the soreness of growing pains is gently massage and stretching the painful area or a warm bath with Epsom salts which contain magnesium is useful. Also consider supplementing your child’s diet with a magnesium supplement or foods rich in magnesium such as leafy greens, fish and bananas. Epsom salts in the bath will also provide a good source of magnesium which will be absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream.

 

Low vitamin D levels have also been linked with growing pains – so get your child outside in the sunshine to soak it up naturally or consider a supplement. Foods high in vitamin D include egg yolks, cheese, salmon and tuna

 

Growing pains in legs 

The most common areas for growing pains in the legs usually is felt in the shins, calves, back of the knees, and front of the thighs.

Growing pains in knees 

If your child experiences growing pains in their knees, they will feel the pain behind their knees. The pain will rarely be felt in the joint itself, and the joint should look normal. If the joint hurts or is red, swollen, or warm, this may be a sign of juvenile arthritis.

 

Growing pains in arm 

If your child feels the growing pains in their arm, it will most likely be in both arms. They’ll will also usually have leg pain in addition to arm pain.

 

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    FIONA STOCK | PAEDIATRIC NATUROPATH & CHILDREN’S NUTRITIONIST

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