How to Know When a Tummy Ache or Headache Is a Real One????

Updated on July 24, 2006
P.P. asks from Plano, TX
5 answers

My daughter has taken the habit of complaining about headaches and tummy aches every time she has to go through a routine (bedtime, school day, nap time etc). Well, I'm terrified because she had a big bump in the head when she was about two years old (she is 4 now), a careless EX-friend of ours was playing with her and threw her on the air and she hit a lamp (brilliant I know...).
Anyways her pediatrician checked her recently but didn't ordered x-rays for her; she told me she was fine and that if she had have any damage it would have shown already. At the time we called 911 and they said she was fine, didn't lose consciousness or had any bleeding.

Honestly I'm terrified that this incident might have caused damage that I don't see and I don't know how to "make" her pediatrician to get her x-rays or further tests.

Even worse, I don't know if DD is just trying to get out of all her schedules routines with a headache excuse and I'm totally falling for it. I'm at my wit's end.
Has this happened to anyone??? Has your child ever complained constantly about headache or any other body pain?? did you solve the mistery?
Fed up mommy.

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

Hi everyone, just a little update on my DD and a big thank for all of you who took the time to answer. all your suggestions have been great! I can't believe I didn't think of tic tacs before, it's an excellent idea and I'm sure my daughter will love the new "medicine". I have been making her to lie down every time she complains and within a few minutes of being bored she tries to get up and says she is fine, so I feel less anxious about it being a real head problem.
Her next doctor's check up is only a few weeks away so she is still on observation until then.
Anyways I Thank you from my heart for ALL of your helpful suggestions!
God bless.

More Answers



answers from Dallas on

I am a Pedi RN and we get calls about this ALL of the time! I very seriously doubt that a minor (speaking as a nurse not as a mom!) head injury from 2 years ago would be causing problems now. Your Pedi would be watching for things like loss of developmental milestones, stomach aches that lead to vomiting, etc... . SInce you have already spoken to your Pedi you should relax! If you really want to you can always ask the DOc to order a CT scan and offer to pay cash for the proceedure.

I would suggest keeping a log of when she has the Headaches and stomache aches- see if after a week you can determine a pattern- is it right before she eats? Is it ALWAYS around the time she is suppossed to do something she doesn't want to do? Is it within an hour of drinking milk or eating dairy (might be related to a lactose intolerance).

My standard line for my daughter (who is 5 1/2) is to tell her that I am sure laying in bed for awhile will make her feel better. After being sent to bed a few times she has become much healthier!

Feel free to e-mail me w/ any other questions!


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I had a child that did this exact same thing! I bought Tic-Tacs & every time she said she had a headache or tummy ache,I gave her one. Usually she was so hapy to get "medicine", that took care of the problem. If, after giving her a Tic-Tac, she still complained of whatever was ailing her, I knew it was a real pain. Silly, I know, but it worked!



answers from Dallas on

My son is a few months shy of ebing 4 and has recently started the same type of thing. Whenever he doesn't want to comply with the current request, I hear "my tummy hurts very much" or "I am very tired and I need to lie down". In my situation, I think he is just working me and trying to exert power and control, which is very normal for his age.

If you otherwise trust your pediatrician, I would trust them on this too. If you have other concerns that you feel are not being taken seriously, then you should find a new doctor.



answers from Dallas on

Without making any unqualified judgments about the health of your little girl, I just wanted to chime in and say that headaches and stomach aches are a standard complaint from my kids any time they don't want to do anything - homework, taking a bath, going to bed - you name it.

I usually tell them that if they don't feel well, they should probably lay down and rest. They inevitably do not want to do this, either. I then give them a choice between laying down or doing what they are supposed to. In no case do I let them use the excuse of a physical complaint to do something else (like watch TV, color, or play with toys).

If they really feel bad, they usually don't mind the rest time. If they decide that they would rather go ahead and do what I have asked them to do, and then get on with their day, then they probably did not really feel bad in the first place. Another thing you can do is to be very concerned and insist that she take medicine right away if she doesn't feel well. This also usually clears up any fake complaints quickly.



answers from Dallas on

My daughter tells me that her tummy hurts all the time. About 2 months ago she fell down half or our stairs on her side. I called the doctor. He said she will be ok, but just a bit sore. A few days later she swallowed a dime. I told her not to put things in her mouth cause it will make her tummy hurt. So now she says it all the time and I often wonder if she still has the dime inside of her or is she hurting from the fall. Or did I just teach her a new phrase. She does seem to go poopoo shortly after and then says her tummy is fine. What I have noticed is that if she is playing and having a good time, she does not complain. I think that if a child is really hurting, she would be in a bad mood and would not want to jump around and play. So look for the timing of when she complains. She may have a headache if she's been real active or jumping allot. Or she may just not want to take a nap or go to school so she has learned how to fool you. Either way "mom knows best".

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches