What to Do When Your Child Complains of Chest Pain

When you are a parent, there is nothing scarier than your child complaining about pains you do not know how to explain.

When they complain about chest pain in particular, your mind might jump to the worst possible conclusions without considering any options.

Doing this might cause senseless panic that will do the opposite of helping.

So, first of all, calm down, and ask your child the right questions.

These are the top 5 things you should do when your child chest is hurting:


1. Sit down with them and calm them down


Your child is going to have to explain the type of pain they are feeling.

That means they are going to have to clearly speak and you are going to have to listen for key phrases.

Try not to worry. But make sure that they explain the kind of pain they are feeling properly. And acknowledge anything they say.

It is important that the both of you remain calm in order to understand what is happening.


Ask yourself these questions:

Have they been sick or vomited during the past days?

In that case, your child might have costochondritis: it is an inflammation of the joint of the breastbone and ribs, caused by coughing.

It is nothing to be concerned about, although you might want to bring your child to the doctor to check if they need any anti-inflammatory medication.


2. Have they been under unusual stress during the past days?


Children can get stressed too.

From school pressure to bullying to family or even friend issues, children get stressed just like adults do.

Stress-related chest pain is more common than you might think and, of course, it is not serious at all.

Everything you should worry about is the cause of your child’s stress.


3. Have they been injured during the past days?

If your child has had an injury in their chest during the past days, you can easily link that to the pain they would feel.

However, other things like unusually intense exercise or weight lifting can cause chest pain because of straining of the rib muscles.


4. How long has their chest been hurting for?


If the pain has been persistent for months or even longer than that, you can definitely rule out heart disease from your worries.

If the pain is caused by cardiac disease, your child would not be able to ignore it for that long, as it is very strong or linked to fatigue and passing out.


5. How much does it hurt?


You should worry about heart disease only if the pain is severe and comes all of a sudden.

In this case, your child will look visibly in pain. Call your doctor right away if that is the case.


If you have questions about these questions, please make sure to contact your local pediatrician.

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