Croup is a respiratory disease which is commonly seen in children between the age group of six months to three years. It occurs mostly in the beginning of winter and the major causes of the disease are considered to be allergies and virus attacks.
Croup in Babies – Causes and Preventive Measures
Croup is commonly caused by viruses such as influenza and parainfluenza. In the initial stage, the viruses infect the throat and nose. Later, it affects the upper part of respiratory tract and it leads to swelling. Croup in babies may also occur due to bacterial infection. Personal hygiene is very essential for preventing the infection of bacteria and virus. Hands should be washed frequently with an antimicrobial soap. It is also essential to keep the fingernails clean as well. Croup in babies is also caused through the direct contact of the affected children when they sneeze or cough. So you should take measures to control the spreading of the disease and should not send children to school or day care if they are ill. The action of influenza virus can also be combated by taking vaccination.
Croup Symptoms – Highly Bothersome
Runny nose, congestion and nasal irritation are the primary symptoms of the disease and usually, the symptoms are very mild and curable within a week. However, croup symptoms become dangerous and life threatening when they intensify. Hoarseness, barking cough, breathing problems, etc appear within 48 hours of infection. The child will refuse to drink fluids due to swollen lymph. This may lead to dehydration. Mild fever, conjunctivitis, rashes, etc are the other croup symptoms. The child becomes anxious due to severe breathing problems. The symptoms such as cyanosis and hypoxia occur due to the restriction of airflow to the lungs. Rashes appear on cheek, tongue, lips, earlobes, toenails, fingers, etc.
Croup Treatment – Medicinal Remedies
Croup can be diagnosed by observing the symptoms and the treatment varies as per its severity. If the disease is mild, you can adopt some home remedies for treating it. You can use ibuprofen or acetaminophen for reducing the fever. Drinking hot water is also effective for croup treatment. The doctor may prescribe glucocorticoid medications and intramuscular or intravenous injection for treating the symptoms. Though the doctors also prescribe epinephrine for treating croup, it has side effects such as rapid heartbeats. Sedatives, decongestants, cough medicines, antibiotics, etc are not effective for babies with croup. One should consult a doctor immediately if the symptoms are very severe.