An umbilical hernia is a protrusion of some of the contents of the tummy into the umbilical area (‘bellybutton’). It is a very common problem but only rarely causes pain. Often the hernia will repair itself as your child becomes older, but this is much less likely to happen after 4 years of age. Sometimes the hernia appears to be umbilical but may in fact be immediately alongside the umbilicus. These hernias are called ‘Para-umbilical hernias’ and although very similar to a true umbilical hernia, always need to be repaired as the body cannot repair them itself.