Claremore Daily Progress

Community News Network

August 5, 2013

Are growing pains real?

(Continued)

NEW YORK —

Still, a small 1988 trial found that regular stretching does appease growing pains. Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Canada randomly split 34 kids with growing pains into two groups. The parents of the kids in the first group were taught how to stretch their kids' quadriceps, hamstrings and calves, and were told to do so every morning and evening for 10 minutes. The second group of parents were told to rub their kids' legs when they hurt and to give them painkillers when needed. Nine months later none of the kids in the stretching group were experiencing growing pains, while the kids in the other group were still suffering, on average, about two episodes of pains a month.

Other researchers have proposed that growing pains are sometimes the result of underlying anatomical problems or differences. Double-jointed kids, who are at a heightened risk for fibromyalgia and musculoskeletal disorders, are more likely to have growing pains, for instance. So, it seems, are kids with pronated (flat) feet, which can cause muscle imbalances and fatigue. One small trial found that shoe inserts reduced the severity and frequency of kids' growing pains within three weeks. When doctors took out their shoe inserts, the pain came back in most of the kids. But it's hard to know how much we can conclude from this trial and the stretching one. The children knew they were undergoing a form of treatment, so their improvement could have been in part the result of the placebo effect (which can, it seems, happen to kids) — they may have felt better because they were being treated, but not necessarily because the treatment worked.

Finally, some doctors have pointed out that growing pains are, for some reason, more common in emotionally instable children. In a 1951 paper, for instance, researchers noted that kids with growing pains were "frequently irritable, nervous, afraid of the dark." The implication seems to be that growing pains are either a reflection of emotional problems or perhaps even caused by them, but it's hard to identify the chicken and the egg here: I would be nervous and afraid of the dark, too, if nightfall brought extreme pain.

Text Only
Community News Network
  • How spy agencies keep their 'toys' from law enforcement

    A little over a decade ago, federal prosecutors used keystroke logging software to steal the encryption password of an alleged New Jersey mobster, Nicodemo Scarfo Jr., so they could get evidence from his computer to be used at his trial.

    July 25, 2014

  • Russia's war on McDonald's takes aim at the Filet-o-Fish

    Russia said earlier this week that it had no intention of answering Western sanctions by making it harder for Western companies to conduct business in Russia.
    But all bets are off, apparently, when you threaten the Russian waistline.

    July 25, 2014

  • cleaning supplies Don't judge mothers with messy homes

    I was building shelves in my garage when a neighbor girl, one of my 4-year-old daughter's friends, approached me and said, "I just saw in your house. It's pretty dirty. Norah's mommy needs to clean more."

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072214 Diamond Llama 1.jpg Llama on the loose corralled in Missouri town

    A llama on the lam cruised Main Street Tuesday before it mistook a resident’s fenced backyard for a place to grab a meal and freshen up.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • NWS-HB0713-HowardMartin-004.jpg Airman laid to rest back home in Indiana six decades after death

    The mystery of what happened to a military transport plane that disappeared in the fall of 1952 into an Alaskan glacier was solved two years ago when a helicopter crew spotted the wreckage. But it took another two years to retrieve the remains of Airman Howard Miller and 16 other servicemen passengers. Saturday, Miller was laid to rest in his hometown of Elwood, Ind., with full military honors. Hundreds turned out for the funeral and burial services.

    July 13, 2014 2 Photos

  • New York to offer free lunch to all middle-school students

    New York's $75 billion spending plan for the fiscal year that began last week includes the first step toward offering free lunch for all 1.1 million students, expanding a program now reserved only for the city's poorest children.

    July 9, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-09 at 11.24.10 AM.png VIDEO: Pilot buys pizzas for storm-delayed travelers

    A Frontier Airlines pilot went above and beyond the call of duty when a recent flight from Washington, D.C. to Denver was diverted to Cheyenne, Wyoming due to bad weather.

    July 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • Why North Korean cheerleaders may soon descend on the South

    When you think of North Korea, "cheerleaders" may not be the first thing that springs to mind. The Hermit Kingdom is perhaps better known for less savory things like gulag-like labor camps and leadership purges.

    July 8, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 11.46.13 AM.png VIDEO: Foiled beach gear theft goes viral

    Video capturing a bizarre confrontation with two women allegedly attempting to steal beach gear on a Florida beach has gone viral.

    July 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 10.40.20 AM.png VIDEO: Sleeping fan suing Yankees, ESPN for $10M

    A fan caught on camera sleeping during a recent game at Yankee Stadium has filed suit against the Yankees and ESPN, claiming he suffered emotional distress when two announcers mocked him on the air.

    July 8, 2014 1 Photo