Back Pain in Children

Back Pain in Children

 

Back pain in children is becoming a very common phenomenon. However, there are certain conditions that need professional medical care and therefore shouldn’t be neglected. Children are quite prone to injuries due to their active lifestyle and sometimes overuse and fatigue can result in an aching back. Carrying heavy bags to school or performing a strenuous physical task that is well beyond the limits of the body can also be the cause of pain. 

If the pain is caused due to these temporary reasons then it is usually short-term and resolves on its own or with some home remedies. But if the pain persists and gets worse with time, it might be caused due to fractures, certain inflammatory conditions, or juvenile arthritis.

Back Pain and its Consequences on the Life of Your Child

  • Chronic back pain can hinder the day-to-day life of the child and prevent him or her from playing, going to school, or even going for walks.
  • Sometimes, back pain is radiating in nature and can spread to other areas of the body such as arms, legs, and hips.
  • It can cause stress and sadness in children as their daily physical activities such as playing or any other activity can get hindered because of pain. 

 

Symptoms of Back Pain in Children

  • Acute or chronic pain in the back and surrounding areas. 
  • A high fever.
  • Numbness and tingling sensations in the body.
  • A hunched or dropping posture.
  • Difficult in bowl movements.
  • Tenderness in the back.
  • Weakness and decreased mobility.

 

Causes of Back Pain in Children 

  • The most common cause of an aching back in children and teenagers is muscle strain due to overuse. 
  • Teenagers who are into sports and athletics might develop Spondylolysis. This condition involves the deterioration of the spine and back pain is one of its symptoms.
  • Children under 10 years of age are prone to infections such as Discitis, which is an inflammation of the discs, and Osteomyelitis, which is a bacterial infection of the bones.

 

When to Visit a Doctor?

Although back pain can be due to not-so-serious causes, there are certain factors that you need to consider whether your child needs medical attention or not.

  • If the pain is persistent and has been around for about a month
  • If the child is younger than 4 years
  • If the child is experiencing decreased mobility and stiffness
  • If there’s a change in the curvature of the spine

 

Diagnosis

The doctor will conduct a physical exam and examine the site of pain and tenderness. He will look for the other symptoms and will ask you to do certain tests like a blood test, an X-ray, and in more serious cases an MRI and a Bone scan.

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Treatment

Normally, physiotherapy would be the best and safest option for a smooth recovery. Mild exercises along with over-the-counter painkillers can really help in alleviating pain and strengthening the back. 

A change in lifestyle and diet also play a major role in improving the overall health of the body. The treatment of your child depends upon the severity of the condition and your doctor will inform you about it accordingly.

 

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