It’s a fact, kids play hard. However, while they’re playing and having fun, children don’t realize they are sore until it’s time for bed. As their bodies begin to relax, sore muscles and joints begin to ache; these aches are commonly called growing pains. However, if pain persists, it may be more than a sore muscle or joint, it could be juvenile arthritis. Here are a few tips to help you know the difference.
Growing Pains vs Juvenile Arthritis
What are growing pains?
Children who complain of growing pains, often describe pain or discomfort in their legs or arms. Growing pains tend to affect children at night; it is not uncommon for aches to wake children from their sleep. Don’t panic, although these aches are called growing pains, there is no evidence linking growth with pain. After all a child’s rate of growth is too piecemeal to cause pain.
Symptoms of Growing Pains
Symptoms of growing pains are pains in the muscle, rather than in the joints. Common spots include the front of the thighs, the calves and the backs of the knees. Pain typically does not last for long periods of time. If pain does persist, it may be time to call a pediatrician. Quick tip: a warm bath before bed can help soothe sore muscles.
What is Juvenile Arthritis?
Yes, children can get arthritis. Juvenile arthritis affects children under the age of 17. Children who have juvenile arthritis may experience persistent pain, swelling and stiffness in their joints.
Symptoms of Juvenile Arthritis
Symptoms to watch out for are tenderness, pain, or swelling of the joints, limited range of motion, joint stiffness, and fatigue. If joint pain persists more than a week, make an appointment to see a doctor ASAP.
If your child has persistent joint pain with no visible cause, call (251) 410-3600 to make an appointment to see our Pediatric Orthopedic Specialist, Dr. Adam Handwerger, today. For more information visit www.aocpediatricortho.com.
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