Children's Hospital Colorado
Orthopedics

Growing Pains in Kids

We treat kids like they should be treated: like kids. That’s why we designed our hospital just for them.

Best Children's Hospital by U.S. News & World Report Orthopedics 2021-2 Badge

Next Steps

Would you like to learn more about us?
Orthopedics
Ready to schedule an appointment?
Schedule online
Need an appointment or have a question?
Call

What are growing pains?

Growing pain is a term used for harmless muscle pains in kids that have no obvious explanation, other than running or playing hard. They're commonly thought of as a rite of passage, and they occur in about 10 to 20% of healthy, school-age children.

Growing pains typically hurt in the muscles and not in the bones or joints. The pains are typically not localized, meaning that both legs hurt as opposed to just one leg or a specific site of pain.

Who gets growing pains?

Growing pains generally happen during two periods: in early childhood among 3- to 5-year-olds and later in 8- to 12-year-olds. Growing pains tend to be worse at night, sometimes waking children from sleep.

When should I worry about my kid’s growing pains?

If any of the following are present, it is unlikely that your child has growing pains and you and your doctor should look for other causes:

  • Symptoms of general illness, such as fever or weight loss
  • Pain specific to a single joint
  • Pain worsening with time
  • Pain interfering with usual daytime activities
  • Limping
  • Abnormal joint symptoms, such as restricted motion, redness, swelling, warmth or tenderness in the related area

Next steps

Cartoon image of a patient and doctor having a telehealth call.

Keeping you safe, wherever you are

We're here when you need us with the same safe, high-quality care we've always offered, even during the pandemic. Now, in many cases, you can get that care without even leaving home because we offer virtual visits across every one of our specialties.

See if telehealth is right for your child

 

Get to know our pediatric experts.

Rachael Mahan, PA-C

Rachael Mahan, PA-C

Physician Assistant

Wendy Pierce, MD

Wendy Pierce, MD

Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation - Pediatric, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation

Travis Murray, MD

Travis Murray, MD

Orthopaedic Surgery

Ryan Pahlau, PA-C

Ryan Pahlau, PA-C

Physician Assistant