Growing pains are a common problem among children and adolescents, often causing them to wake up in the middle of the night with aching legs. Despite the name, growing pains aren’t actually caused by growth spurts, instead they’re believed to be triggered by physical activity.
While they can be distressing for both children and parents, there are ways to manage the pain. Here, we’ve compiled a list of solutions you can try at home that could minimize your child’s discomfort and help them get a good night’s sleep.
What Are Growing Pains?
In simple terms, growing pains are moderate-to-severe leg pains that occur during the peak growth periods in childhood – typically between 3-5 years old and then again around puberty .
The exact cause of growing pains is unknown but theories suggest it may have something to do with growing bones or muscle fatigue from excessive physical activity. Whatever their source, growth spurt-related bedtime leg pain is experienced in about one-third of all preadolescent kids.
Although it’s rigorous exercise that emphasizes these unusual sensations in muscles as cramps sometimes affect athletes so badly that childbirth looks like bicycle ride – what counts here is quantity before quality.
Growing pains feel different from ordinary cramps or other muscular ache due to exposed subcutaneous muscle tissues. Commonly developing later in the day or even more likely at night when kid has gone into deep sleep.
- Pain appears fast.
- Occurs often on either side correctly but not simultaneously.
- Common sites include behind knees joints; buttocks area; thigh part mostly front face
- Pain duration might extend for minutes or heighten up two hours.
But worry not – If you’re uneasy about your kid’s hurting legs keeping him/her/they up is because discovering ways that could ease the pain is simple.
How to Treat Growing Pains
Here are some solutions you can attempt at home to alleviate growing pains:
Stretching Exercises Before Bedtime.
Once getting up late in the evening – when child find themselves swapping a runner within weeks, they might be suffering from overworked muscles that cannot handle all of his physical growth impulses.
Some gentle stretching before bedtime serve ample time and situation to detect if your kid has any form of concern with their joints or muscles while also aiding circulation leading to better nerve transmission during heavy sleep sessions.
Some suggested leg stretches include:
- Skipping rope
- Toe touches
- Leg swings
- Hamstring stretch
Another way of soothing growing pains is via massage therapy: Applying slight pressure on affected areas will help soothe and relax those tense muscles thus reducing the feeling of discomfort being experienced by your child’s limbic system which brings about modulating sensations intrinsic for comfort.
Apply mild oil such as castor or lavender scent on limbs then begin applying deep tissue massages followed by rubbing sideways starting from body joint towards foot/ knee area till numbness sets in thereby releasing tension built up inside ligaments, tendons, connective tissues etcetera. . .
It’s good practice only undertake a massage session under close supervision! inexperienced hands might cause accidental injuries resulting in bruises or scars…so maybe leave this one for professionals offer service nearby. safety first!
Using heating pads/hot water bottles help increase circulation in painful areas; hence reduces inflammation whilst bringing relief especially useful either AFTER exercise sessions perhaps because it loosens up tight muscle cells ready for bed/rest period.
Remember NEVER use hot compresses during excessive heat periods as this could worsen symptoms instead try applying cold damp towels across forehead/nape/head/chest areas until rash subsides OR consult your healthcare provider if symptoms persist past a few days.
Growing pains are usually more intense after long hours of active exercise or overuse. However, this does not suggest that you completely stop indulging in physical activity as it’s an essential component for healthy growth and development.
Encupping support system is perfect in limits to when experiencing physical exhaustion/nervous fatigue caused by excessive stressors! So maybe try reducing the time spent doing those activities gradually but ensure sufficient rest exists before bedtimes.
Also investing in comfy supportive shoes with comfortable fit might help ease any distracting sensations hindering sleep/anxiety
IMPORTANT – Never wake up children from their deep sleep while experiencing leg pain even though you may feel like helping them soothe these pains especially since this could cause temporary confusion/disorientation leading to uncertainty which further makes things worse.
Q: Is there a difference between growing pains and actual muscle/joint problems?
A: Yes, there is a significant difference between growing pains and potential muscle or joint problems. Growing pains tend to occur more frequently at night and do not coincide with swelling, inflammation, fever or other signs that something else may be wrong.
Q: Can growing pains be prevented?
A: Although they can’t necessarily be prevented since we don’t know their exact cause – Proper warm ups prior exciting exercise activities/stretches/sufficient hydration/healthy anti-inflammatory diet all improve overall body health thus decreasing likelihood onset of symptoms using proper footwear applies too as comfortability & fit ensures circulation!
Q: Do my child need see doctor?
A: While mild cases of growing pains can generally be managed by utilizing some home remedies such as mentioned above- Anytime your child has persistent pain doesn’t subside after several days or is accompanied by unusual fever/ genital discomfort visits/appointments with physicians/paediatricians are always best course action because pro-level evaluations involving other methods like muscular test/medical imaging require special expertise only accessible within healthcare services.
Growing pains are a common problem for children and can be distressing for both the child and their parents, but in this article, we’ve outlined ways to manage the pain at home. Encouraging rest, stretching exercises before bedtime, massage therapy, warm compresses are some effective solutions you can try.
It’s important to remember that growing pains should not interfere with your child’s ability or desire to be active since it promotes healthy growth development too. However keep tabs on extent of physical exhaustion exhibited particularly during high physical stimulation periods accompanied by enough sleep/rest period ensuring comfortable footwear while exercising.
If symptoms persist despite remedies mentioned above best course action is consulting paediatricians. . . They’re always there to help!