Joint pain: When should parents worry?

What does joint pain mean in a child and should you be concerned? After 18 years of private practice and pediatric care, I have found that anytime a child complains about joint pain it should not be overlooked.

I understand that some children are more sensitive and might complain on a regular basis, but it is best to address joint pain right away. The reason for this is that I have found many times a small problem that wasn’t evaluated often leads to a more extensive problem causing more pain and takes longer to recover.

Typically, children do not complain about joint pain unless it is a continual source of discomfort. I would recommend asking the child to point to the area of pain, and then ask other questions- Did they fall, or get hurt playing sports, worsen with activity, waking up with pain, or do they have a fever, etc? Based on the answers to the questions, you may need to dig deeper into the situation.

This may be a good time to get the expertise of a chiropractor that specializes in pediatric care to help differentiate the problem. A chiropractor is proficient in evaluating not only the spine but extremities and can determine if imaging is necessary to rule out any abnormalities in the joint.

Some children experience joint pain when they have sudden growth spurts but there can be many reasons for joint pain including injury, arthritis, scoliosis, muscle tightness or weakness, and even poor posture.

At Natural Spine Solutions, we evaluate a child’s posture when sitting and standing to determine if there are imbalances contributing to their problem. Repetitive movements done daily such as slouching, carrying a heavy backpack and stomach sleeping can lead to poor posture for a child over time. But there is help, it is amazing what a few small changes can do to help improve a child’s posture and prevent joint pain associated with poor posture.

No one wants to see a child suffer and you don’t need to. By visiting our office, we will determine if chiropractic treatment is appropriate, determine the cause of the joint pain and make further recommendations or referrals for appropriate care. If your child is complaining of pain, let us help; call Natural Spine Solutions at (208) 966-4425.


Dr. Wayne M. Fichter Jr. is a chiropractor at Natural Spine Solutions. The business is located at 3913 Schreiber Way in Coeur d’Alene. Call for more information, (208) 966-4425.

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