You’ve tried Calpol, you’ve tried extra blankets, alongside a concoction of over the counter remedies – but nothing seems to be working. The doctor says it’s a virus, so there is nothing more they can prescribe and to ‘keep doing what you’re doing’… But you have a gut feeling that there is something not quite right. You say to yourself you’ll give it 48 hours to see improvement.

It’s 3am. You hear the tell tale seal-like cough coming from their bedroom.

And then the penny drops that this really could be every parent’s worst nightmare: croup.

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes.

What is Croup?

Croup is an infection that affects the voice box and the airway to the lungs. Croup can often be recognised by the sudden onset of a ‘seal-like’, barking cough that is usually accompanied by a rasping sound when breathing in.

Croup usually affects young children between six months and three years old. However, older children may also suffer sometimes. It is possible for children under six months to develop croup, although this is rare.

The condition tends to affect boys more than girls.

What Signs and Symptoms Can We Look Out For?
  • A bark-like cough
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Cold like symptoms
  • Hoarse voice
  • Fever (temperature of 38 degrees of above)
How To Treat Croup:
  • Try to reassure the child and keep them calm
  • Sit the child upright. and keep them comfortable
  • Steam treatment is no longer recommended
  • Call NHS 111 or your local General Practice for advice
Still Concerned?

Dial 999 for an ambulance if the child:

  • Is struggling to breathe or has an increased breathing rate
  • Is unusually sleepy or lethargic
  • Has blue tinges to their lips, face or extremities (cyanosis)
  • Has developed tight skin around the ribs and chest

Find this blog useful? Please share this to your favourite social platform for your family and friends- you never know who this could help!

If you found this helpful – you may also like our blog on Asthma.

Any questions, feel free to leave a comment!

Richard - Founder & Course Originator

Richard is the Founder & CEO at SkillBase First Aid

1 Comment

Richard Craddock · January 11, 2019 at 10:19 am

We’ve had some enquiries about steam no longer being used. Please see the latest NHS guidance to support that here:

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