Acute pain: How to assess in young children

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Find out how to assess acute pain in your young child (age two to five) at home and in medical settings.

Key points

  • ​In young children, common causes of acute pain include routine vaccinations, everyday bumps and bruises, infections, surgeries and procedures.
  • Behavioural signs of pain in this age group include muscle tension, squirming, arching the back and painful facial expressions.
  • In medical settings, health-care providers assess your child's pain with tools such as the Faces Pain Scale-Revised.
  • Be prepared for the pain your child might feel from procedures and encourage your child to express their pain so they can receive the most appropriate treatment.
Last updated: January 25th 2019