Stomachaches in Kids: When Should You See a Doctor?

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Young children are no strangers to stomachache. This abdominal pain can be caused by constipation or overeating. However, there are times when it can be a sign of more serious health concerns, like appendicitis, poisoning, or bladder infections. Because of this, it can be difficult to determine whether or not it’s time to see a doctor. 

Kids generally having trouble communicating how their body pains feel doesn’t help, either. For this reason, it’s up to you as the parent or guardian to learn if your child’s stomachache indicates something serious. Here are some signs to watch out for that tell that this pain requires immediate medical attention:

Blood Is Involved

Blood in your child’s vomit or stool can help you determine the cause of their stomachache. Constipation from pushing the stool out of the rectum may cause bleeding. However, it could also indicate an infection or inflammation that requires urgent care, especially if the stool has a black, tarry appearance.

Fever Is Present

Stomachache accompanied by a fever could mean your child is fighting off an infection or virus. If they develop a bad cough or experience changes in their breathing pattern, it may be a sign of pneumonia. On the other hand, it could indicate low blood pressure if they experience sleepiness and lethargy, besides stomachache and fever.

The Stomachache Is Recurring

Take recurring symptoms as a warning sign. If your child’s stomachache comes up every few days and does not easily go away, it might be time to see a health professional. This is because recurring stomachaches are symptoms of different health conditions, including:

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Inflammatory bowel diseases
  • Food intolerances
  • Acid reflux
  • Urinary tract infections

Peeing Is Painful

Children have small bodies. Sometimes, what they think is a stomachache could really be bladder or urinary tract pain. If they have a hard time peeing or find urinating painful, it’s best to consult a doctor and schedule a urinalysis to determine if there’s an infection.

Severe Bloating Is Experienced

Constipation can sometimes be relieved by getting more rest and drinking more water. Other times, this condition can be severe that it can require removal of impacted stool. This is why stomachache accompanied with severe bloating in children may sometimes need seeking kids’ urgent care. Some signs of bad constipation include blood in the stool or hardened or pellet-like stools.

Signs of Allergies Accompany Stomachache

Stomach pain can be a sign of an allergy. Keep a close eye on your child and see if they experience other allergic reactions, like vomiting, fainting, difficulty breathing, nausea, hives, or dizziness. These symptoms are associated with anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction requiring urgent care for children.

Conclusion

Some stomachaches go away on their own, but others tell that something is seriously wrong. It’s generally difficult to decide when to call a doctor based on several symptoms alone, especially since children can’t verbalize their pain properly. However, no matter how minor the condition is like, a stomachache should never be overlooked. 

Remembering these signs can help you make the right decision. It also helps to trust your instinct. If you feel your child needs medical attention right away, seek urgent care professionals.

At Your Kid’s Urgent Care, we offer urgent care pediatric services. Our service-oriented staff is ready to care for your child in our branches in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Largo, Orlando, and Vestavia Hills. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help!

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