Back pain is most common in adults because children and teenagers tend to be flexible and resilient. For this reason, they do not often suffer the same types of back injuries. As a matter of fact, most medically significant forms of back pain in children and teens is pretty infrequent. Since children rarely suffer from pain in their backs, any time they complain about long term or short-term back pain should be taken very seriously by parents and pediatricians. This complaint will often result in a detailed consultation that should include both a physical exam and a review of the child’s medical history.
These pain episodes can result in radiological studies, including x-rays or MRI scans. Following these tests, the child or teen may be referred to a specialist for further examination and diagnostic tests.
Often, the most common causes of back pain in children and teenagers tend to be fairly age-dependent:
Younger children are not as likely to be putting their spine under the same types of stress as older children and adults. For this reason, younger children do not tend to have back pain that is medically significant and their pain is mostly short-lived.
Older children are often more aggressive in their activities and sports, This can increase the risk of injury to the bones, nerves, and soft tissues in the spine. Teenagers are most likely to test limits with their bodies, often resulting from peer pressure or sports. At this point, compression fractures are more common, and occasional disc injuries do occur. Older pediatric patients can also injure the joints between vertebral bones, leading to painful stress injuries.
For more information about lower back pain in children, click here.
To talk with a Vancouver WA chiropractor about whether or not your child or teenager should seek chiropractic care, click here.