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Download PDF Headache and Your Child: A guide to causes and tips to dealing with headaches in young children

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The triptan group includes tablets, nasal sprays, and injectable forms. Dihydroergotamine is available in nasal spray or injectable formats, and when necessary, compounding pharmacies can make other formulations. There are clinical studies on the use of triptans and dihydroergotamine in children and adolescents. Almotriptan table , Rizatriptan table , Zolmitriptan Nasal spray are approved by the Food and Drug Administration FDA for use in adolescents 12 to17 years old and Rizatriptan table is also approved in children six to 11 years old.

Opiates or narcotics in children are not usually recommended because they cause sedation and may cause dependence if used too often. A child or teen who is getting a migraine one or two times a week should use preventive therapy—medication taken daily to prevent the onset of a migraine or non-drug behavioral approaches or better yet both. It is best for parent and child or teen to review the subject with their practitioner who will be familiar with the medications available and assess which one might prove optimal.

Tension Headaches

If your child feels a need for frequent dosing with headache medications, it could be a hint that something else might be wrong. Just as adults can begin to have chronic daily headache, young people can as well. This is why it is important for all headache sufferers to monitor the frequency of headaches, the medications taken and the response to treatment. Non-pharmacologic approaches can be used in all young patients and can be quite beneficial. The following regular lifestyle routines or habits may prove very helpful in your child:.

As a parent, one of the best solutions you can try is education—for yourself and your child. Almost one out of five women and one out of 20 men suffer from migraine. Doctors understand some of the science behind I and have excellent treatments available today. In addition, there is great hope because extensive research is taking place in this age group.

How Headache Differs in Young People

If your child fails to control their headaches despite these steps, reassess each step and meet with your provider. Consider a second opinion to learn about possible alternative management. Often, going to see a Pediatric Neurologist or Headache Specialist comfortable in caring for children with headaches leads to effective treatment.


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Preventive treatment reduces frequency and acute therapy stops a headache or at least blunts the pain within an hour or two. For the most part, children and adolescents respond well to the right therapy and need not suffer excessively. Updated August 16, , from: How Headache Differs in Young People Many children get headaches, and many actually have migraine with or without aura.

The headaches may be shorter, lasting only an hour or two.

For example, they may happen only once a month, or every few months. The headaches may go away after a period of a few months to years. The pain tends to be more bi-frontal across the forehead than unilateral on one side of the head. As children get older, the pain tends to be more unilateral. The two most common are abdominal migraine and cyclic vomiting syndrome. Your child then learns how to reduce muscle tension and slow his or her heart rate and breathing. The goal of biofeedback is to help your child enter a relaxed state to better cope with pain. OTC pain medications, such as acetaminophen Tylenol, others and ibuprofen Advil, Motrin IB, others , are usually effective in reducing headache pain.

Before giving your child pain medication, keep these points in mind:. Although they haven't been well-studied, a number of dietary supplements have been suggested to help children's headaches, including:. Check with your child's doctor before trying any herbal products or dietary supplements to be sure they won't interact with your child's medicine or have harmful side effects. Typically, you make an appointment with your family doctor or your child's pediatrician. Depending on the frequency and severity of your child's symptoms, you may be referred to a doctor who specializes in conditions of the brain and nervous system neurologist.

Here's information to help you get ready for your child's appointment and to know what to expect from the doctor. Until you see your child's doctor, if your child has a headache, place a cool, wet cloth on your child's forehead and encourage him or her to rest in a dark, quiet room. Consider giving your child over-the-counter pain medications such as acetaminophen Tylenol, others or ibuprofen Advil, Children's Motrin, others to ease symptoms.

Headaches in Kids: What Parents Can Do to Help

This is because aspirin has been linked to Reye's syndrome, a rare but potentially life-threatening condition, in such children. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products.


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  8. This content does not have an Arabic version. Diagnosis To learn about the nature of your child's headache, your doctor will likely look to: Not sleeping enough at night can cause a headache. We all experience stress from time to time, and children and teens are no exception. If your child is under a lot of pressure from school, or experiencing big changes at home like a divorce or a big move, a headache can result.

    6 Tips to Help Parents Reduce Headaches in School-Age Children

    Your child is more likely to have headaches if a parent gets them as well. If your child has a headache, try giving her water and over-the-counter ibuprofen. Follow the instructions on the package for the appropriate dosage and do not give it to your child more than three times in a week. Topiramate Topamax was recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the prevention of migraines in teenager. Fortunately the majority of headaches in children are not a cause for alarm.

    Headaches in Kids: What Parents Can Do to Help | American Migraine fdn.

    However, there are a few instances which require a little more investigation. He or she will perform a physical exam and decide if any tests need to be done. If your pediatrician suspects a migraine, she might refer your child to a neurologist who is familiar with medications to help prevent and treat them. And if your child or teen is suffering from chronic headaches and migraines, further treatment is warrented.