Children’s stomach pain is one of the common reasons why parents bring their children to a Pediatrician in Florida. This problem has several causes, ranging from serious things like appendicitis to benign and minor issues like gas. So how can you tell the difference between a minor discomfort and something that requires emergency medical attention? The problem is that children often get confused when it comes to the pain they haven’t experienced before. Let’s get into some of the common causes, symptoms, and medicines for stomach pain for a child.
What Causes Stomach children’s stomach pain?
Stomach pain in a toddler is the body’s way of communicating that something is wrong. However, since not all kids’ stomach pain is the same, you will also have to assess the degree of pain and its duration to determine the nature of a problem. This is an important concept that every child must be taught. There are several causes of children’s stomach pain, including the following:
Gas Trapped in the Abdomen
While gas is a normal process during digestion, it can cause stomach pain in a toddler if it gets trapped in the abdomen. This often happens when it cannot move well through the intestines. The amount of gas produced in the digestive system is usually influenced by the diet of the child. Certain foods, including carbonated drinks, sugar substitutes, beans, and dairy products, can lead to excessive gas production. Apart from that, eating or drinking in a hurry can also cause an increase in the amount of gas produced.
Constipation is a common cause of stomach pain in children. However, most children won’t understand what constipation is, especially if they are experiencing it for the first time. The best way to know that it might be constipation causing the problem is to ask them to show you where the pain is. Constipation usually causes children stomach aches near their belly button or on the left lower side of the abdomen. Unlike other conditions, the children’s stomach aches caused by constipation come and go. If you suspect that the stomach pain in a toddler is being caused by this condition, you can confirm it by asking when they last had a bowel movement.
Eating Too Much
Eating too much food can cause discomfort and children’s stomach aches. Kids are unaware of this, so sometimes they will eat quickly and won’t stop till well past when their stomach is full. This will cause some pain afterward.
In most instances, you won’t know that your child is lactose intolerant until they experience stomach pain from eating foods that contain lactose. Lactose is a natural sugar found in dairy foods. Under normal circumstances, the body produces certain enzymes to digest it properly. However, in lactose-intolerant individuals, this enzyme is missing. Therefore, when someone who is lactose intolerant consumes dairy products, they will experience abdominal cramps, gas, diarrhea, or constipation.
Food poisoning is a common cause of stomach pain in people of all ages. It occurs when you eat food that wasn’t prepared properly. You can also get food poisoning from eating food that has gone bad. Apart from pain, food poisoning will also cause diarrhea and vomiting.
Stomach viruses are a common cause of stomach pain in children. Their main symptoms are pain and diarrhea. Stomach viruses can be passed around in schools and daycares from one child to another. Another common symptom of stomach viruses is vomiting.
Appendicitis is an emergency condition. Therefore, if you suspect that your child is suffering from inflammation of the appendix, you must bring them to the emergency department as soon as you can. The appendix is a small organ that projects from the colon, and when inflamed, it causes severe, constant pain in the lower right side of the child’s abdomen.
What Are the Symptoms of Stomach Pain in Children?
It’s easy to notice stomach pain in children. Children experiencing stomach pain will often cry, express the pain facially, or curl up. Young children will also quickly inform you when they are experiencing any type of pain. When your child tells you that they are experiencing pain, you should ask some follow-up questions and monitor them to try and determine the cause of the pain.
Duration of The Pain
Most of the causes of abdominal pain are uncomplicated, and the pain will not last long. For instance, pain caused by gas will usually go away on its own within 24hours. If the abdominal pain lasts longer than a day, you must take your child to see the doctor.
Location of the Pain
The majority of the simple stomach pains are located in the center of the abdomen. This pediatric abdominal pain will cause the child to rub the area around their belly button. You should be more concerned if your child is experiencing pediatric abdominal pain anywhere else, especially low and down on the right side of the abdomen. It could be a sign of appendicitis.
The Appearance of the Child
Generally, if your child looks very sick, you should seek medical help as soon as you can. Other things to look out for when a child is experiencing kids stomach pain include a pale appearance, sweating, sleepiness, and listlessness. The child might also refuse to eat or drink.
Kids’ stomach pain frequently causes children to vomit. Many kids are brought in to see a Pediatrician in Florida with these symptoms. However, this doesn’t always indicate a serious problem, as most simple causes of vomiting will go away without treatment. You must only start getting concerned when the vomiting doesn’t go away for more than a day.
Diarrhea is another common symptom that accompanies abdominal pain, especially if the cause is viral or food poisoning. If you notice any blood in the stool, it’s advisable to seek medical attention as soon as you can.
You must seek emergency medical attention if your child is showing the following symptoms:
- fever or chills
- Vomiting that lasts for more than a day
- Failure to eat and drink
- Blood in the stool
- Skin rash
Treatment and Care for abdominal pain in children
Treatment for abdominal pain depends on what’s causing the pain. Sometimes the treatment could be as simple as letting the child rest without any medicine for stomach pain for the child. In some instances, the pediatrician can also recommend that the child take fluids and stick to a bland diet. Depending on the cause, other situations may also require specific medicine for stomach pain for a child, hospitalization, and surgery.
If your child is experiencing abdominal pain, there are several things you can do to ease their pain, including the following:
- Make sure the child has enough rest.
- Help the child to drink lots of clear fluids like water or juice.
- Avoid forcing the child to eat if they are unwilling.
- If the child is hungry, give them bland food like rice and bananas.
- Place a hot water bottle on the child’s tummy to try and ease the pain .
- If the pediatric abdominal pain is too much, you can give the child paracetamol.
What do you think about the causes of abdominal pain in children? Has your child experienced such symptoms before, and if yes, how did you deal with them? If your child is having stomach pain and you are not sure what’s causing the pain, feel free to contact us or bring them in if it’s an emergency.