Like parents, like children
Common causes of headache include tiredness, stress and symptoms associated with viral infections.
So with cold and flu season upon us, sore heads may pop up too. These can be uncomfortable and upsetting for your little one.
Cold- or flu-induced headaches
It's not unusual for children to get a headache when they come down with a cold or the flu.
This may be accompanied by other symptoms for example, fever and loss of appetite due to a virus may lead to headaches from dehydration. Fever may present itself as sweating and chills and may be present along with a throbbing headache. Alternatively, if your child has a blocked or runny nose from a cold, a headache may result from a swelling of the sinuses and present as aching in the sinus area.
Assess the pain
When your child has a cold or flu and is complaining of a headache, a good first step is to try to assess the pain. At different ages, children have different abilities and degrees of understanding for self-reporting their levels of pain. For example, around ages five to six, children are beginning to gain a better understanding of the pain they're feeling. For younger kids, it can be trickier to get information out of them; you may have to get a little creative.
For cold and flu season, the answer to the relief of pain may be in your medicine cabinet. Medicines can't cure the common cold or flu, but you can relieve symptoms, including headaches, by using anti-inflammatory agents such as Nurofen for Children*. Of course, if your child’s pain concerns you, seek advice from your healthcare professional.