Last Modified on Jun 18, 2014
What Is Croup?
Typically considered a childhood health concern, croup is the infection of the upper airway that is characterized by obstructed breathing and a distinctive “barking” croup cough. Generally occurring in the fall and winter, croup causes swelling and narrowing of the voice box, windpipe, and the breathing tubes that are connected to the lungs. This swelling and constriction can make breathing difficult for the affected child.
While a croup attack may be scare, it is not typically considered medically serious and can often be treated at home. Often beginning as the “common cold,” croup develops as inflammation and coughing progress. Coughing is typically worse at night and can be provoked by crying, anxiety, and agitation. Additional symptoms include fever, sore throat, hoarse voice, and noisy or labored breathing.
Usually caused by a viral infection, the most common cause of croup is parainfluenza virus. The virus may be contracted by breathing in infected respiratory droplets that have been coughed or sneezed into the airspace. The virus may also exist on toys and other frequently touched surfaces. Infection typically begins in the nasal passage and spreads to the vocal cords and windpipe.
Natural Treatment Options and Remedies for Croup
As scary as the croup cough and labored breathing may sound, less than 5 percent of patients develop airway obstruction serious enough to necessitate hospitalization or serious medical treatment. As such, natural treatment options typically do just the trick to cure croup. Natural treatment options include aconite, honey and cinnamon, hydrogen peroxide, and a mixture of sugar and turpentine. Additionally, changing the diet to remove added sugar and eliminate dairy may also eradicate some of the mucus causing the coughing and inflammation typical of croup. Treating possible allergens with local honey and drinking additional water to remain well hydrated also cure the croup cough and condition.
[YEA] Both my boys have allergies and both had croup regularly as young children with difficulties breathing. Initially I tried the steroids which worked but only by suppressing the immune system. I looked for an alternative. I found the homeopathic remedy Aconite worked a treat on both of them and they would be back to sleep with regular breathing within 1/2 an hour.
[YEA] My 4 year old son began the croup cough last night. He woke up crying. I read somewhere that honey and cinnamon was good for a cough. My husband used it for a cough he had for about 3 months that wouldn't go away and it worked for him. My son doesn't like cinnamon, but he took the honey. We sat up for a little and his cough entirely went away. We put him back to bed. He coughed maybe once or twice the rest of the night. He's been fine all day today and is currently sleeping like a baby! Hope this works for someone else!
[YEA] My son recently woke up with a croup cough, difficulty breathing, and stridor. It hit him suddenly and he showed no signs of a cold beforehand. That night he wouldn't take any medicine so I sat up with him in the recliner with the humidifier. Once I turned the humidifier on, he returned to normal breathing with no cough in about 20 minutes. Now I run the air purifier during the day and the humidifier at night. I keep his room as dust-free as I can. I took down the venetian blinds, vacuum often, change bedding... Etc. Also, my son loves honey, so I let him eat as much unprocessed, local honey as he wants. This helps with the allergens. I think, for my son, it was the allergens that caused the croup cough. If you figure out what is causing the cough and treat that, instead of trying to just treat the cough, you can control it more easily.