I was at a bacherolette party Saturday night when I get THE call from my husband. He was taking our son to the ER because he had woken up coughing so severely he couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t believe it. I had left a perfectly healthy boy at home when I drove off just hours before. I met them at the hospital and heard the word “Croup”. I immediately knew everything would be fine.
Thank God for my sister who had, years ago (before I had kids), told me about Croup. It stuck in my mind because she said it makes the kids sound like they are dying. They have this horrible, catchy, barking cough. But, this is a very common illness that generally passes in 5-7 days where the first night is usually the worst. Children under the age of 5 are most susceptible.
Had I not known what Croup was, I would have had a meltdown, imagining the worst. This is why I am sharing it with you. Armed with the knowledge, I knew I could relax and not worry about my little guy except for a little discomfort in the following days.
The Mayo Clinic describes Croup as a “repetitive cough similar to the noise of a seal barking, can be scary for both children and their parents. After all, attacks of croup may jar your children awake at night and leave them gasping for breath.”
In our case, because our little guy couldn’t get a full breath in for a decent amount of time, we needed to take a trip to the emergency room to make sure everything was fine and that he was, indeed, still getting enough oxygen. However, most cases can be treated at home by getting more moisture into the child’s system either by using a humidifier/vaporizer or by bundling them up and getting them out in the cool night air.