Broken Tailbone In Children – Causes, Symptoms & Treatments


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Tailbone injuries among children? Perplexed, are you not! One of the most common injuries among kids and early teens is a broken tailbone. Read on to know more about the symptoms and recovery of a broken tailbone.

Tailbone or coccyx is a small bone that lies at the lower end of the spine. It is the final division of the vertebral column. Often while playing on the basket ball court or running up and down the staircase, children fall and break their tailbone, resulting in severe pain. The pain results from the stretching of ligaments and bruising of the bone.

However, proper medication and care quickly repairs the injury and heals the patient. Also, it’s not that every accidental fall results in injuring the tailbone. It is only when the back is hurt severely that the tailbone gets affected.

What Is Tailbone?

Tailbone is the final division of the vertebral column. A tailbone is formed of 3 or 4 or 5 vertebrae. Each vertebra is made of bones and cartilage.

Causes Behind Tailbone Injuries In Children:

In most of the cases, a broken tailbone results from direct attack to the tailbone. Here, we take a closer look at the causes:

  • If the child falls on a hard surface in the sitting position, he ends up breaking his tailbone.
  • He may injure his tailbone in course of games like outdoor sports.
  • Continuous friction or straining against the spine injures the tailbone.
  • Some of the less common factors include bone spurs, tumor, local infection and compression of the nerve roots.

In some cases it becomes difficult to ascertain the cause behind the injury. It is important to consult a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment of broken tailbone.

[ Read: Spine Diseases In Children ]

What Are The Symptoms Of A Broken Tailbone:

It is always better to have the right knowledge. Here are the symptoms associated with a broken tailbone:

  • The patient complains of severe localized pain and experiences tenderness in the tailbone area.
  • If the injury is due to physical attack, there are bruises in the localized area.
  • The patient complains of the pain getting worse while sitting in one position for a long period of time. This exerts pressure on the tailbone and worsens the pain.

[ Read: Vitamin D Supplements For Children ]

How To Care For A Broken Tailbone?

If a child injures his tailbone, the symptoms surfaces and become causes severe pain on the 3rd and 4th week.

  • Rub ice pack for 20 minutes immediately after the injury occurs. Repeat the process if necessary after an hour.
  • The patient takes ibuprofen for the next 3 days. This offers the necessary muscle relief and reduces pain in bones as well.
  • The child finds it difficult to sit in one place for long. Give him a cushion or rubber pad to ensure no pressure is exerted on tailbone when he sits.
  • A heating pad helps.
  • Passing stool gets difficult. Take a few spoons of mineral oils in this case. Inform the doctor in case it gets serious.

Preventive Measures To Take:

There are no preventive measures to take as such. At the max, the child can take care while playing to prevent accidental falls.

  • Apart from this, keep the bones healthy by participating in weight bearing exercises.
  • Ensure there is plenty of calcium and vitamin D in the diet.

[ Read: Calcium Rich Food For Children ]

Doctors treat the patient based on the original cause of the fracture. Most often, even the severest of the injuries get better under proper medical care. The recovery period, however, depends on the severity of the fracture, dislocation and bruises.

Mother, do share with us, in the comment box below, how you helped your child during the phase when he had injured his tailbone. Your experiences can become inspiration for others.

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