Our friends at Centra Care have sent this message about children and abdominal pain.
Summer vacation usually brings a break in the rigid schedules of the school year.
And while a relaxed schedule is usually a good thing, Doctors say these changing behaviors have led to a an increase of pediatric patients with abdominal pain.
When eating habits change or when the distractions of vacation or summertime activities cause kids to forget to visit the potty, severe abdominal pain often follows.
When you see a doctor due to belly pain, detailed information will be collected in order to rule out a serious problem like appendicitis. Questions regarding the location of the pain, frequency and duration will be asked as well as identifying any red flags like sudden weight loss or blood in vomiting or stool. A physical examination will also be conducted and blood and/or stool tests may be administered.
If there is no physical reason found for the bellyache, the pains may be anxiety or stress-related. Exercise is a great stress reliever for both kids and adults.
Here are some other tips that may be helpful with abdominal pain:
Sip water or other clear fluids.
Avoid solid food for the first few hours.
If you have been vomiting, wait 6 hours, and then eat small amounts of mild foods such as rice, applesauce, or crackers. Avoid dairy products.
If the pain is high up in your abdomen and occurs after meals, antacids may help, especially if you feel heartburn or indigestion. Avoid citrus, high-fat foods, fried or greasy foods, tomato products, caffeine, alcohol, and carbonated beverages.
Avoid aspirin, ibuprofen or other anti-inflammatory medications, and narcotic pain medications unless your health care provider prescribes them. If you know that your pain is not related to your liver, you can try acetaminophen (Tylenol).