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I have a very good friend who's 5 year old has just started kindergarten. She has completely become "unglued" about attending school. She will hardly eat anything and complains, almost daily, about her stomach hurting. She has also started to run a fever anywhere between 99-101. My friend took her daughter to the pediatrician; however, the doctor cannot find anything wrong with her. I was wondering if the stress she is having over school can cause her to run a fever? Could separation anxiety in children under 10 cause symptoms like that? 

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Hi, 
From my own experience, there is a very good chance that stress caused by adapting to school, new kinds and new rules might somewhat contribute to the troubles your friend’s kid is experiencing. The stress is even bigger if the child is very attached to the parent or has troubles in social situations and dealing with other kids in kindergarten.

So, even though it might sound strange, it happens that child actually feels pains (and the stomach pain related to school is one of the most common). That’s because kids at this age still lack the words and understanding of what they really feel, so their bodies react to the situation instead. Yet, I still would not completely throw away the possibility that sudden exposure to the new environment might have caused some sort of inflammation. I’m sure our friend will monitor how things are going and consult the pediatrician again, if needed.

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