Common Hernia in Children, What Should You Do

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Hernia happens when there a slight imperfection at the abdomen muscle wall causing soft tissue to become prominent. It looks like a small bulge on the skin and will looks clearer when the child cough or wriggle. The usual condition experience by children is umbilical hernia or also known as belly button hernia. The condition happens at belly button. This problem is caused by muscle weakness on the abdomen wall during childbirth. Inguinal hernia happens at the groin and normally experience by male child. This defect happens when the testicle has gone down into the scrotum. Usually belly button hernia or umbilical hernia does not need treatment because this situation with will get better naturally by itself. Inguinal hernia is also able to recover by itself but if part of small intestine trapped inside the hernia, this must rectified through surgery.

Inguinal herniaIs this a serious situation?

If intestine is not trapped in hernia, this state is usually not serious.


  • Painless outcrop in surface of the skin nearby belly button or groin that becomes big when the child cough, sneeze or cry.
  • Vomiting and pain in abdomen if intestine is clasped.

What is first action?

Try pushing hernia softly. Usually hernia can pushed in into muscle wall by giving some pressure.

Should I see a doctor?

Bring the child to the doctor immediately if you see outcrop in the stomach of less than six months old baby. Bring child to see doctor immediately if hernia becomes hard and outcrop did not goes in when pushed softly or child experience pain and vomiting.

What is the doctor action?

If hernia feels hard or did not go in, doctor would refer child to paediatrician. The hernia may need to be corrected by surgery. Hernia surgery is very simple. If your baby age less than six month and he have inguinal hernia, doctor may recommend surgery to avoid bowel from clasping.

How can I help?

  • While umbilical hernia / belly button hernia still exists, do often examination, for example after bathe, to make sure the hernia did not grow or becomes hard. Also make sure that the hernia reenters after being pushed.
  • Discuss with doctor of measures must be taken to determine either to leave the hernia to recovered by itself or by surgery.
  • Make sure you bring the child to see a doctor for a check.
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