Pain & Fever



Baby, toddler, or teen—it’s never easy for a parent to see their child in pain. Help them understand common types of pediatric pain and how to provide comfort and relief at home.

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Parent counseling tips

Identify and soothe teething pain

Teeth pain
  • Know the signs: Some teething signs include drooling, fussiness, red or puffy gums, or wanting to chew on hard items
  • Use a little pressure: Try massaging your baby’s gums with clean hands or offer a plastic or rubber teething toy
  • Keep things cool: Let your baby chew on a chilled, damp washcloth (avoid frozen teething rings, which can be too hard)
  • Try a pain reliever: Ask your pediatrician about giving a dose of Infants’ TYLENOL® or Infants’ Motrin®
  • Know what not to do: Numbing gels that contain benzocaine are not recommended for infants

Pediatric Teething Resource

Prevent and treat sports injuries

Sport injuries
  • Play smart: Keep sports fun and age-appropriate, and introduce different kinds of activities to help develop muscles
  • Set limits: Limit sports to a maximum of 5 days a week and 1 sport a season
  • Watch for signs: Call your pediatrician if your child favors one side of their body or body part, can’t sit or climb stairs, has stiff joints or muscles, has trouble breathing, has dizziness or headache, or loses feeling in fingers or toes
  • For sprains and strains, remember R.I.C.E.:
    • Rest your child and have them keep weight off the injury
    • Ice the injured area for only 20 minutes, 4 to 8 times daily
    • Compress the injured area with an elastic wrap, boot, or splint
    • Elevate the injured area above the heart

Pediatric Sports Injuries Resource

Understand growing pains

Growing pain

Despite the name, growing pains are muscle aches that aren’t actually caused by growth.

  • What causes growing pains:
    • Overuse during the day is the most likely cause of nighttime growing pains
    • They often occur after children play or exercise harder than usual
    • Studies show that they could be linked to restless leg syndrome
  • How to recognize growing pains:
    • Muscle aches that usually affect both legs
    • Aches that do not involve the bones or joints
    • Can cause a child to wake up during the night
    • Pains that don’t happen every day—there can be days, weeks, or months between episodes
  • Who gets growing pains:
    • Most common in preschool and school-age children
    • Slightly more common in girls than boys
    • They tend to stop by the teenage years
  • How to ease growing pains:
    • Gently massage the legs
    • Use a heating pad
    • Have your child do stretches
    • Ensure your child takes breaks during sports or activities
    • Try an over-the-counter pain reliever such as TYLENOL® or MOTRIN®

Pediatric Growing Pains Resource

Headache causes and treatment

Headache causes and treatment
  • Know your child’s triggers: Lack of sleep, needing glasses, stress, hunger, not drinking enough water, and cold or flu viruses are all common causes of headaches
  • Home remedies: Have your child rest in a dark, quiet place; offer a glass of water, fruit juice, or food; put a cold pack on their forehead for 20 minutes; stretch and massage any tight muscles
  • Try a pain reliever: TYLENOL® or MOTRIN® can help reduce headache pain
  • When to call your doctor: If your child’s headache gets worse, the headache lasts more than 24 hours, your child throws up, or if you are worried or have any questions or concerns

Pediatric Headache Resource

Manage period cramps

Period cramps

Period cramps are common: More than half of girls report them.

  • Apply heat: Place a heating pad on the lower belly for 20 minutes, 2 times a day
  • Reduce stress: Stress can make cramps worse. Relaxing activities like yoga and meditation can help
  • Keep moving: Exercise, like walking or swimming, can help, and it’s ok to go to school and do other normal activities
  • Take a pain reliever: Try a medication with ibuprofen like MOTRIN® IB, which can help the body make less of the chemicals that cause cramps

Period Cramps Resource

Good to know

Safe medicine storage for parents

Approximately 50,000 young children are brought to the emergency room each year because they accessed medicines that were left within reach. Help parents avoid these risks with guidance from the Up & Away campaign in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

  • Keep medicines in a safe location that is too high for young children to reach or see
  • Never leave medicines or vitamins out on a counter, table, or at a sick child’s bedside
  • At home or away, keep medicines in child-resistant containers until right before you take them
  • Always relock the safety cap on a medicine bottle
  • Teach children what medicine is and why you or another caregiver must be the one to give it to them
  • Never tell children medicine is candy so they’ll take it, even if your child doesn’t like to take their medicine
  • Remind babysitters, houseguests, and visitors to keep purses, bags, or coats that have medicines in them up and away and out of sight when they’re in your home

Featured resources

Discover more pain and fever resources in the Resource Suite

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.