First Aid

    Stomachaches can be caused by many things, from gas or constipation to stress, overeating, or a contagious stomach bug. Sometimes, complaints about stomach pain may have nothing to do with the stomach itself — pain can come from another part of the body.

    Signs and Symptoms

    Get Medical Care if a Stomachache Happens Along With:

    • pain that's frequent, increasing, or severe
    • pain that starts near the belly button, then moves to the lower right side of the belly
    • trouble walking due to pain
    • repeated vomiting, especially if it is greenish-yellow
    • signs of dehydration
    • trouble having a bowel movement (poop)
    • bloody or black bowel movements
    • loss of appetite for more than a day or two

    Think Prevention!

    Encourage kids to:

    • avoid overeating or eating right before going to sleep
    • never share utensils, cups, straws, etc.
    • get plenty of fluids and fiber-rich foods like fruits and vegetables
    • reduce fatty, greasy foods like fries and burgers
    • wash hands well, especially before eating and after going to the bathroom
    • get lots of sleep and talk about their worries to help deal with stress
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
© 1995-2021 KidsHealth® All rights reserved. Images provided by iStock, Getty Images, Corbis, Veer, Science Photo Library, Science Source Images, Shutterstock, and Clipart.com