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First Aid: Stomachaches
Stomachaches can be caused by many things, from gas or constipation to stress, overeating, or a contagious stomach bug. Sometimes, complaints about stomach pain may have nothing to do with the stomach itself — pain can come from another part of the body.
Signs and Symptoms
- sore throat
- painful urination
Seek Medical Care
If a Stomachache Is Accompanied by:
- pain that's frequent, increasing, or severe
- pain that starts near the belly button, then moves to the lower right side of the abdomen
- difficulty walking due to pain
- persistent vomiting, especially if it is greenish-yellow
- signs of dehydration
- trouble having a bowel movement (poop)
- bloody or black bowel movements
- loss of appetite for more than a day or two
Encourage kids to:
- avoid overeating or eating right before going to sleep
- never share utensils, cups, straws, etc.
- get plenty of fluids and fiber-rich foods like fruits and vegetables
- reduce fatty, greasy foods like fries and burgers
- wash hands well, especially before eating and after going to the bathroom
- get lots of sleep and talk about their worries to help deal with stress
Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: April 2014
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- A to Z: Gastroenteritis
- A to Z Symptoms: Abdominal Pain
- "Stomach Flu"
- Belly Pain
- The Story on Stress
- When Tests Make You Nervous
- Word! Gastroenteritis
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Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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