Relieving kids' headaches
Kids get headaches just like grownups do, and they can be triggered by any number of things: an upcoming test, a fall in the playground, a cold. But they don't have to keep kids from the stuff they love. Here's how you can help send their pain packing:
- Lie them down with a cool, damp compress. Darken their room, and have them breathe slowly.
- Let them nap. A simple sleep can often bring headache relief.
- Give them a good-for-you snack. Not eating can cause headaches, so if it's been a while, offer some whole-wheat crackers, cheese or fruit.
- Watch for, and avoid, dietary triggers. Nitrates are food preservatives found in processed meats like bacon and hot dogs. They can sometimes bring headaches on. The caffeine in chocolate, soda, coffee and tea can do the same thing.
- Call your pediatrician right away if the headache:
- Wakes your child up
- Worsens, or headaches become more frequent
- Changes your child's personality
- Happens after a head injury
- Comes with vision changes, persistent vomiting, fever, neck pain, and/or stiffness