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First Aid: Chest Pains

First Aid

Chest pain can be caused by many things, from a pulled muscle to asthma. Depending on the reason for the pain, the symptoms may differ. Chest pain in children is rarely a sign of serious heart trouble.

Signs and Symptoms

  • tightness
  • discomfort
  • burning sensation
  • pain when taking deep breaths
  • coughing
  • wheezing

What to Do

  • Call the doctor whenever your child has ongoing chest pain.

Seek Emergency Medical Care

If:

Chest pain is accompanied by:

  • trouble breathing or rapid breathing
  • a racing heart or heart palpitations (fluttering)
  • pressure in the chest
  • dizziness or fainting
  • blue or gray color around the lips
  • exercise or exertion

Think Prevention!

It's impossible to always avoid chest pain, considering its many potential causes. But you can:

  • Make sure kids get routine immunizations to prevent infections that could cause chest pain.
  • Follow the doctor's treatment plan if your child has asthma.
  • Avoid foods that seem to bring on indigestion.
  • Make sure kids have a thorough physical examination before participating in organized sports.
Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: April 2014

Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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