When many people think about chronic pain, they mainly think about a problem that affects adults. In all actuality, chronic pain is an issue that’s becoming more common in children and teens. Such matters can come from injury, physical conditions, and common bad habits like improper posture. If your child is complaining about chronic pain, don’t assume that they are exaggerating. Although they are younger, their chronic pain can be just as real and intense as those of adults.
Types of Chronic Pain in Children
Chronic pain affects about 6.4 percent of children. Abdominal pain is one of the most common types of pain among the youth, as roughly 23 percent of children who suffer from chronic pain suffer from abdominal pain. Sympathetic dystrophy syndrome is another leading cause of chronic pain in kids. This diagnosis causes nerve pain in the limbs and affects about 9.2 percent of children with chronic pain. Other types of pain include back pain, headaches, and migraines. In all cases, pain is only considered chronic if it lasts longer than three months.
The Reason for Chronic Pain in Children
A recent study analyzed 3,752 children admitted to 43 hospitals across the United States. The kids in the study were mostly white females with an average age of 14. The children in the study were hospitalized for an average 7.32 days for their pain and received an average of 10 additional diagnoses while in the hospital including mood disorders, nausea, and constipation.
It’s hard to understand why so many children are diagnosed with chronic pain, but physicians believe that anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders may play a role. Physical, emotional, and sexual abuse was also responsible for the development of chronic pain in 2.1 percent of child chronic pain patients.
Since doctors are unable to pinpoint the cause of chronic pain, they are often unable to offer the appropriate treatment. The fact that physicians diagnose so many children with additional illnesses along with chronic pain shows that there is no one-size-fits-all treatment. The best way to determine the source of chronic pain in children is to consider it an ailment of its own and not a symptom.
It can be difficult to determine how to approach chronic pain treatment in children, which is why it’s best to get professional advice. The pain experts at Garden State Pain Control can help you find the source of chronic pain and provide suggested treatment options. Contact Garden State Pain Control to set an appointment with a New Jersey pain expert today.