What is Croup or Pseudo-Croup?
Pseudo-croup or the croup is a lump in throat and is distinct by a strident cough similar to the yap of a seal. It is caused by a virus and the patient suffers from redness and inflammation around the larynx. It is generally cured within a week and croup in children is very common. Similar to common cold application of vaporizer and hot steam relieves the patient from tenderness around the throat. This may sound similar to any cough and cold but the child suffering from it generally find it very difficult to swallow anything and it is very dreadful confrontation.
Causes of Croup:
Like common cold, croup cough is caused by a virus known as parainfluenza. It is a communicable disease and can be communicated to a healthy person from another sick person. It is transferred through air and by touch. When the patient actually comes in physical contact with another healthy person or coughs in close distance from him without covering his mouth with either hand or handkerchief it may be communicated. On few occasions it can be an additional disease. Like while suffering from measles, flu, RSV or any kind of bacterial infection Croup can be an associative disease amassing more trouble for the child. Commonly it occurs during winter season.
Symptoms of Croup:
Like any common cold the patient suffers severely through night due to fall in temperature. Other few symptoms of croup are
- Loud barking cough similar to the sound made by seal.
- Running nose
- Milder cough
- Inflammation in throat
- Trouble while breathing.
- May even be accompanied by fever.
Treatment of Croup:
As Croup is caused by a virus antibiotics don’t have reaction over it. Generally it is advisable to treat croup through home remedies however if in any case the child feels severe breathing difficulty then it is better to consult a doctor and get the child admitted to a medical facility where he can be sited in a croup tent for croup treatment. Croup tent is a unusual tent where there is a controlled excessive supply of oxygen to facilitate the child to breath comfortably. Steroids may be prescribed to the child to dwindle the swelling and inflammation in the throat. This will even help the child breathe normally.
Although this should create a difference in treatment for croup but if breathing still persist than artificial respiration through tube may be arranged in the hospital.
Lifestyle changes alone don’t affect the condition of a child suffering from Croup. However prevention is considered better than cure. If care be taken such that the child is minimally exposed to common cold or flu virus it may minimize the probability of child suffering from croup. Frequent washing of face and hand is very important to maintain hygiene.
Home remedies for Croup
- Stay calm and be patient with the child. Don’t seem anxious as this may alarm the child too which may worsen his condition further.
- Make the child breathe moist warm air.
- Hold the child tightly and in upright position to make his breathing easier.
- For young baby water, formula and mother breast milk will be relaxing while for elder kids you can even try and fruit juice or soup.
- Sleep will refresh the child and will sooth him over infection.
- Take the child on a walk in cool air it will improve his breathing.
- Try these home remedies and you will soon find considerable change. For a change you might want to sleep with your little one and take care of any emergency. If you observe you might find that the coughing subsides in baby during daytime and it might amplify during night. It is a common occurrence and you simply need to focus on getting his infection cured.