Can I Treat Croup at Home?

Is your child coughing a cough that you’ve never heard before? If so, he or she could likely be dealing with croup.

Croup is a respiratory infection that many children deal with between the ages of 3 months and 5 years, but even though it sounds scary, it’s highly treatable!

Our AFC Urgent Care Farragut team further highlights croup below, so read on.

What Is Croup?

Croup is a respiratory infection, and it’s often caused by the parainfluenza virus. The infection causes swelling and inflammation of the upper respiratory tract, which can result in difficulty breathing and a loud cough that sounds like a seal or dog bark.

Croup very rarely affects adults and children over the age of 5, due to larger respiratory tracts that aren’t as affected by voice box and windpipe swelling. We’ve listed the common symptoms of croup below.

Common Croup Symptoms

  • Loud barking cough that’s further aggravated by things like crying, anxiety and agitation, which can cause a cycle of worsening signs and symptoms
  • Fever
  • Hoarse voice
  • Noisy, restricted breathing

How Treatable Is Croup?

Croup is highly treatable! Most cases of croup among children can be treated in the comfort of your own home, and it typically goes away after three to five days.

When your child starts to experience croup symptoms, one of the best things you can do to is to make sure he or she stays calm and comforted, since crying and agitation can worsen airway obstruction. Hold your child, sing lullabies or read him or her stories to encourage relaxing. In addition to this, we’ve listed other ways you can help your child feel better below.

Ways to Treat Croup at Home

  • Hold your child in a comfortable upright position. Sitting upright may make breathing easier.
  • Make sure your child is staying hydrated. Water can work to flush out all types of infections, including croup.
  • Encourage rest. Sleep can help your child fight the infection.
  • Try a fever reducer. If your child has a fever, OTC medications like acetaminophen can help.
  • Skip the cold medicines. OTC cold medicines aren’t recommended for children of any age, and they can be harmful in children less than 2 years of age. Plus, they won’t help croup.

We’re here now and always for you and your family! Don’t hesitate to visit our AFC Urgent Care Farragutcenter today.


3700 Cahaba Beach Road Birmingham, AL 35242

Our Mission and Values:

Our mission is to provide the best healthcare possible in a kind and caring environment, in an economical manner, while respecting the rights of all of our patients, at times and locations convenient to the patient.

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