Growing pains in children are a common problem. They are relatively benign, but can be distressing for both the child and parents as they wake the child from sleep. The classic growing pains are in the muscle behind the knee and they only generally occur at night. If the symptoms are in the joint or bone and occur during the day, then they do not meet the criteria for being a true growing pain and need to be thoroughly assessed for the cause. There are some rare, but serious problems that can cause the symptoms which is why they need to be thoroughly investigated.
The cause is not known, but is thought to be due to biomechanical and biochemical problems.
There is no treatment for growing pains and they are self-limited. Usually when they wake the child, reassurance and gentle rubbing of the area is helpful. Sometime stretching is helpful before going to bed. Anti-inflammatory drugs have been reported as helping.