Health Care

What to Do When Your Child Has Bone and Joint Pain

young girl athletes

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An active childhood can mean frequent bumps and bruises for many children and young athletes. But when your child is experiencing intense pain or limited mobility, it can be hard to know how to find them the treatment they need.

Whether your child has been living with scoliosis for years or suffers an acute sports- related injury, the physicians at the AdventHealth want to help. We treat a wide range of conditions including sprains, tendonitis, fractures and scoliosis. Our pediatricians, neighborhood rehabilitation centers, emergency rooms, medical specialists; including pediatric orthopedic surgeons and podiatrists are here to heal your young athlete and help get them back in the game.

Here's how to best recognize injuries in your active child and get them back on the path toward health and wellness.

When to See a Doctor

Soreness is typically a part of athletics, but pain that causes a limp, limited range of motion, awakening at night and inability to engage in physical activity is worrisome. Swelling after injury is also concerning.

“Injuries in a growing child are different than what is typical for an adult. While an adult is more likely to injure ligaments, the growth plate in a child is a weak spot that puts them at risk for a physeal (growth plate) fracture. If not treated appropriately, this can put the child at risk for growth and limb deformity problems,” says Cheryl Lawing, MD, board- certified pediatric orthopedic surgeon at AdventHealth.

There is one injury that can result from collision or impact: The pediatric brain may be more susceptible to concussion, and the concussion course may be prolonged in young athletes. Concussions or suspected concussions should always be evaluated by a physician who is skilled in concussion evaluation and treatment.

Identifying the Issues

How do we check your child for the presence of an orthopedic injury? Often, its a specialists expertise paired with advanced imaging technology.

Radiographs (like X-rays) are typically used in the evaluation of most musculoskeletal injuries. But there is no substitution for keen clinical diagnosis skills, including pertinent history and clinical examination. If further imaging is needed, AdventHealth has many locations and partners where CTs and MRIs can be obtained.

In an effort to make your child as comfortable as possible, many imaging facilities play movies during the procedure to make young children comfortable about the procedure. VR Goggles are utilized to show the MRI experience to the kids beforehand to reduce anxiety or fear. These small efforts have been successful in reducing the need of anesthesia for kids.

Personalized Treatment Programs

Our initial approach to treatment is often non-invasive. We have many options for non-operative fracture treatment including waterproof casts and waterproof splints. We take both the child and the family into account when making treatment decisions and a plan of care.

We know how difficult it is for your child to be sidelined. Depending on their injury, we try to allow them to be as active as possible while healing. With the help of highly trained physical and occupational therapists at your local AdventHealth facility, we create rehab plans that are custom to your child's injury and physical activity.

A multidisciplinary approach helps our teams create the most comprehensive care plan for your child. With the coordinated care at AdventHealth, we often participate in physician collaboration to ensure preeminent treatment of our patients.

If you're concerned that your child may have an orthopedic issue, let us help get you answers. The sooner they see a specialist, the sooner they can get back to living their best life. To request an appointment, find a location near you.

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