During early primary school years, many children experience relatively severe pains in their legs at night, often after a strenuous day of activity at school. Usually dubbed ‘growing pains’, this problem affects about 1 in 3 Australian school children and can disturb sleep.
Parents can try the following self-care instructions at home, to help to relieve ‘growing pains’, before seeing your Podiatrist:
- Give your child a warm bath, or heat packs, before bed
- Encourage your child to stretch the calf and thigh muscles of each leg, at the end of the day, preferably after a warm bath
- Gentle massage of the thigh and calf muscles, using massage oil, fisiocream or Sorbolene cream
- Remind your child to drink plenty of water during the day, especially on hot days or when playing sport
- Give your child paracetamol, as required, to reduce pain
- Check that your child’s shoes are not worn out and are not overly-flexible or unsupportive
- Some children experience some relief with the use of full length compression sports tights (eg SKINS) during and after sporting activities
You should always seek prompt medical advice if your child:
- has severe pain that only affects one leg, or is still present next morning
- is unwell or has a fever or loss of appetite
- has swelling, redness or tenderness around a joint, or is limping
If your child experiences ‘growing pains’, don’t hesitate to visit Foot Health 4 Kids for expert care and advice.