Growing Pains

This is a pain many kids feel in their legs. We call it "growing pains," but the pain isn't really linked to growing. Kids can feel it even in times when they aren't growing very much.


So, what causes this pain? We don't fully understand. It's more common in kids who are very flexible and have flat feet. It's more common in kids who have a low pain threshold. And some think these pains may be linked to a child's bone strength or activity level.


What are the symptoms? Growing pains tend to affect boys and girls between the ages of two and 12. The pain comes late in the evening or at night. It can be mild, or it can hurt so badly that a child has trouble falling asleep, or wakes from sleep. And in the morning, the pain is gone. Growing pains tend to come and go. A child can have a few episodes, and then the pain can go away for weeks or months. Other kids experience growing pains often.


Growing pains are a nuisance, but not a serious medical problem. You can manage this pain by massaging your child's legs. Pain medication may help, too. And for kids with flat feet, shoe inserts may relieve it. Over time, your child will outgrow their growing pains.