Does This Sound like Growing Pains?

Updated on February 02, 2012
A.J. asks from Norristown, PA
11 answers

My 4 year old son sometimes complains about his legs hurting. Lately it's been one in particular. The other night it was really bugging him and he cried all during the night. Now he's OK. When I was massaging it before bed, it was tender to the touch in one specific part of his calf. He insists he didnt' injure it or bump it. In the past I've had to get him shoes with good support because his legs hurt if he wears flat sandals or rubber boots...he's a solid, heavy kid, so his little legs carry quite a bit of weight.
I have mentioned it to the doctor, and there is no bumps or anything to examine without x-ray....he said it's probably growing pains...have any of your boys had this? Was it growing pains?

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answers from Charlotte on

I would give him ibruprophen for a week to see if it helps, in case there is some inflammation. Keep up with the shoes with good support - I'd get hard soled shoes.

Hope he gets over this soon.

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answers from Pittsburgh on

Doctors will often say there is no such thing as "growing pains" yet it seems like a LOT of kids have them.
But my son's best buddy has pains in his legs & feet, at night, so severely that his mom gives him Tylenol before bed when it's flaring up....helps if she rubs his legs & feet, too.

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answers from Jacksonville on

Our son has gotten them a few times. He is 13 now, but he got them periodically when he was younger...less so now. When he was about 4 or 5, he had something else that wasn't growing pains though. I can never remember what they call it but it is essentially an infection in the hip that the pain radiates. It makes it painful to stand/walk. But sitting, he never had any pain with it. It went away on its own in a day or two.
Growing pains tend to last a day or two also... but our son's were never painful enough to make him cry. Soaking in a warm bath, massage, and advil or motrin also can help ease the pain. If it is a charley horse, (those make me want to cry too) then give him something with potassium (banana, watermelon, or an electrolyte drink with potassium in it).

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

I have known many kids for whom leg pain was nothing, and a few for whom it was something very bad. If it continues, please insist that the doctor follow up - as a parent, you are within your rights to demand that. Good luck and God bless...

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

My 4 yr old son has complained about leg & arm pain occasionally. Which I assume are growing pains.
When I was a kid I complained about it too. I don't remember the pain, but it must have been bad b/c I remember going to get xrays of both legs (which I thought was cool). The xrays showed nothing wrong. I think I was in second grade at the time.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Fort Collins on

My son had them for a year or two. Probably 3.5-4.5 yo mostly. He hasn't had them in a while now, which is great. They were growing pains and they were extremely painful. I would rub his legs and give him ibuprophen when he woke screaming and crying from the pain.

My husband and my sister also had them growing up. They are very real.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

my girl had growing pains at night. she would cry and I would rub them. having her eat lots of bananas seemed to help.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Allentown on

Both of my children have experienced growing pains in the legs. When my daughter first had them we tried to rule everything else it could possibly be. They usually occur at night for some reason. My children aren't over-sensitive but this usually brings tears. I've found that a dose of Motrin and some leg rubbing helps.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

It does sound like growing pains. Two of my grandchildren really suffer with them. What helps them is taking a pain reliever and sitting in a hot bath tub for a while. Massaging also works, but my hands get tired. Also, a hand-held massager helps. I give a handheld massager to my granddaughter to massage her legs when she's having problems. It seems like it flares up after she's had a particularly active day.

Good luck to your LO.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

That sounds identical to my 4 year old. His are especially bad after he has a day with lots of running, jumping and playing (and one leg is always the worse one). It is horrible to hear how much pain he is in, as I do not recall ever having growing pains. I usually massage his calves and give him Tylenol if he cannot go to sleep. It doesn't feel like a Charlie horse or anything since the muscles are soft and feel normal. At least this will not last forever.....

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Richmond on

Growing pains, from my experience with kids, almost always happens in the legs for some reason. But what your describing sounds like maybe he's got a charlie horse... make sure he's hydrated all day, that will help if that's the case. Charlie horses make me cry too! Ouch!

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