In case of a coughing fit, hold the child in his arms and calm him down
Many parents have experienced it before - at night the child begins to cough heavily and gasp for breath. In such a case, parents should stay calm. The Child Health Foundation advises that you take your child in your arms or sit them upright so that they can breathe more easily. An open window can also be helpful.
Don't panic at pseudo croup
Despite the dramatic situation - child with shortness of breath - parents should remain calm. You can hug and calm the scared child. It is important to ensure that the child is sitting or held upright to make breathing easier.
The foundation for child health often reports that the nocturnal coughing fits with shortness of breath are pseudo croup. “During the day the child was still very happy and fell asleep calmly in the evening. But suddenly there is an unheard of, scary sound from the nursery, "explains Berthold Koletzko, chairman of the Child Health Foundation. He advises opening a window so that the child can breathe in the fresh, cool, humid air Let water in the bathtub to allow the child to breathe in the humid air in the room, and an open refrigerator door can also provide relief if the child takes in the cold air, after which the child should have a cold drink.
What is pseudo croup? “Real” Krupp used to be understood to mean larynx diphtheria, which has now almost been eradicated by vaccinations in Western Europe. In pseudo croup, the same symptoms occur as in "real" croup, but without a diphtheria infection. The airways are narrowed, so that in addition to the severe coughing fits, breathlessness also occurs, the foundation reports. This is often preceded by a mild cold with a runny nose.
Cigarette smoke and air pollution increase the risk for pseudo croup. As a rule, children between six months and six years are affected. The greatest risk is for two-year-olds. Usually a seizure is benign and the next morning everything is fine again. But there are also life-threatening forms. "If the hunger for air worsens and the lips, hands or tip of the nose turn blue, the child has to go to the nearest clinic immediately. In such cases, it would be wrong and dangerous to wait for the doctor or an emergency medical service. Every minute can be precious." reports Koletzko.
If pseudo croup occurs for the first time, the child is sent to a clinic for safety, where he is observed until the next morning. In rare cases, a child does not suffer from pseudo-croup, but from an inflammation of the larynx, which can be life-threatening. The child gets a fever and has difficulty swallowing from the pain. The voice sounds bright and soft, but not hoarse. The general condition of the child is rapidly deteriorating. In this case, the foundation advises parents to call an emergency doctor. Children who suffer from pseudo croup have only a slightly elevated temperature and no difficulty swallowing. (ag)
Cough can indicate serious illness
Self-treatment for cough
Image: Sabrina Gonstalla / pixelio.de