why does my child always have a stomach ache
Talk to the provider about the location of the pain and its time pattern. Let the provider know if there are other symptoms like fever, fatigue, general ill feeling, change in behavior, nausea, vomiting, or changes in stool. What part of the stomach hurts? All over? Lower or upper? Right, left, or middle? Around the navel? Is the pain sharp or cramping, constant or comes and goes, or changes in intensity over minutes? Does the pain wake your child up at night? Has your child had similar pain in the past? How long has each episode lasted? How often has it occurred? Is the pain getting more severe? Does the pain get worse after eating or drinking? After eating greasy foods, milk products, or carbonated drinks? Has your child started eating something new? Does the pain get better after eating or having a bowel movement? Does the pain get worse after stress? Has there been a recent injury? What other symptoms are occurring at the same time? During the physical examination, the provider will test to see if the pain is in a single area (point tenderness) or whether it is spread out.
They may do some tests to check on the cause of the pain. The tests may include:
Blood, urine, and stool tests CT (computerized tomography, or advanced imaging) scan At some point, every parent hears these three words: БMy stomach hurts. Б Most of the time, kidsБ stomach pain goes away on its own with home remedies such as ginger ale and TLC. But sometimes stomachaches signal something more serious. How can you tell the difference? Pediatric gastroenterologist,б offers parents five tips about tummy aches in tots and teens, along with advice on when to call or visit the doctor: 1. БStomach fluБ isnБt really the flu,б which can bring onб stomachaches in children, is typically caused by a virus. б It usually includes diarrhea with or without vomiting and possibly a low grade fever. It will run its course in threeб to fiveб days without a need for a doctor s help.
Be sure to have your child drink plenty of fluids. A trip to the doctor or possibly the emergency roomб is in order if there is blood in the stool or vomit, if your childБs symptoms last longer than fiveб days, there is a high fever, or there are signs of dehydration, such as dry lips, decreased urine, pale skin or listless behavior, as theseб are signs that something more serious could be wrong. 2. Kids get heartburn, too We tend to think ofб б as an adult problem, but itБs also common in kids. GERD is often tough to pinpoint, especially in very young children, but vomiting is often a strong indicator. So are complaints of a sour taste in the mouth, pain in the upper part of the abdomen and excessive burping. GERD can typically be treated with antacids and, if necessary, medications called H2 blockers such as Pepcidб or Zantacб or proton-pump inhibitor drugs such as Nexiumб or Prevacidб. Changes in the diet can help, too.
Kids with GERD should avoid acidic drinks like soda pop, orange juice, tomato-based products, spicy foods and medications, such as ibuprofen, can irritate the stomach. 3. Constipation is a frequent cause is a common cause of abdominal pain in kids. Adding more fiber to a childБs diet, along with apple juice (preferably unsweetened) or prune juice can really help. Watch for rectal bleeding, though. It could signal something more serious. Longstanding issues with constipation can point to other medical conditions such asб celiac disease, an underactive thyroid gland or other condition that needs further medical attention. 4. Eight glasses of water a day is no myth Drinking a lot of fluid is important, and not just to keep kids hydrated during a bout of gastroenteritis. б б will help them maintain healthy bowel function. At least half the fluid a child drinks should be plain water. Avoid soda pop and other sugary drinks, including sweetened juices, flavored waters and sports drinks.
Too much sugar can actually cause stomach aches Б not to mention obesity and the long-term health problems associated with it. 5. It may be more than just a stomach ache Most of the time, a stomach ache shouldnБt cause alarm. But parents should be mindful of how long it lasts and any other symptoms that come with it. Acute pain in a childБs lower right abdomen is a sign of appendicitis, and you should seek immediate medical attention for your child. In addition, recurring bouts of what seems like gastroenteritis could really be a sign of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), says Dr. б Goldman, especially if you have a family history of IBD. б Longstanding recurrent stomachaches can be caused by food allergies, celiac disease, parasites, and lactose intolerance. So when a stomachache seems like something more, listen to your parental БgutББ and donБt be afraid to talk to your childБs doctor and seek further medical attention and advice.
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