Growing pains occur in children, making their feet and legs ache at night. They often occur in the calves, knees, and thighs.
Sometimes, children can feel them in their stomachs, suffering from headaches. Such pains usually take place at night during growth spurts.
But can people experience growing pains as adults?
Adults stop growing and are unlikely to get growing pains. Young adults may experience them sometimes, but the pain stops after 22. What adults may think as growing pains may be one of these problems:
Leg Cramps: Electrolyte disturbances, such as low calcium, potassium, and magnesium, can cause leg cramps that imitate growing pains. Doctors can detect it with a blood test and suggest supplementation to correct it.
Joint Hypermobility: Anybody overextending their joints during daily activities may feel pain at night. It happens from the joints slightly getting injured during the day.
Blood Clots: Blood clots in the legs’ veins can cause leg pain. It can be severe and needs immediate medical treatment. Adults noticing swelling, redness, or discomfort from touching the pained area of their leg should call their doctor immediately.
Lyme Disease: It is another problem imitating growing pains as adults. It is a bacterial infection one experiences if an infected tick bites them. While antibiotics can treat it, some may continue feeling mild pain.
Fibromyalgia: It affects various body parts and often feels like chronic muscle or deep bone pain. Fibromyalgia occurs in flares after sets of activity. Doctors treat it with specific pain relievers, antidepressants, and rest.
Osteosarcoma: It is bone cancer usually occurring in children, teenagers, and young adults. However, it is not uncommon in adults and elders. Osteosarcoma causes bone pain in the legs. Chemo and radiation can treat it as long as it is confined to the bone.
Shin Splits: Overusing the legs is running, playing sports, or dancing causes shin splits. The pain is felt along the front of the shinbone and feels like a growing pain. The treatment is simple - ice and rest.
Restless Leg Syndrome: Those who feel an itch or pain in their legs at night may have restless leg syndrome. Similar to shin splits, it occurs from excessive activity during the day.
Growing pains are musculoskeletal and are typical among children. Medical professionals are yet to identify its cause.
However, it is highly unlike to experience growing pains as adults. However, anybody experiencing constant discomfort in their legs should consult with a doctor.
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