Remedies for Croup in Children : Croup is a viral infection that affects kids, especially infants and toddlers. The viruses that cause croup are the same that cause common cold. But croup and common cold are not the same illness, even though there are similarities. Common cold usually affects the upper airways and gets healed naturally in a couple of days.
Croup will not get healed as quickly and the usual irritation, coughing and blocked airways, the symptoms associated with common cold, will get worse. Kids will have hoarseness in their voice, they will experience barky coughs and their breathing would be quite noisy. The airways are not just blocked and hence breathing made difficult in croup but the airways actually swell up which contracts the space, thereby making breathing noisier. Croup would often cause fever too.
Kids aged six months to three years are the most vulnerable to the viruses that cause croup. The condition and its symptoms will persist for up to a week in most cases. In very cold weather, the illness may linger longer than a week.
How to Respond to Croup?
There are many remedies and supplements for croup in children, some of which have been clinically proven. But the key is to respond at the right time. The earliest response is the best approach. Many parents don’t realize that their kids are suffering from croup. It may take many hours or a few days in some cases for the symptoms to become obvious. Kids would find it difficult to breathe, swallow and speak. They will be anxious, often frightened and they will have varying degrees of discomfort.
Observing a kid and being very watchful to notice the remotest signs of such symptoms will be crucial here. If parents can have timely intervention and opt for the effective remedies on the very first day, then it is possible to prevent worsening of the illness. It is not possible to prevent croup but you can always regulate its severity with proactive or timely response.
Herbal Remedies for Croup in Children
Herbal medicines are the best remedies for croup in children. They are completely natural and safe. Hence there are no side effects. Toddlers and infants are too young to be given any strong medicine, either to be ingested or to be applied topically. Most parents don’t like any medicines for their kids unless they are vaccines or there is an imperative need for a drug. Since there are herbs that have been proven to be effective against croup, there is no need to look for other options.
Herbal remedies would not only reduce and manage the severity of the symptoms but also strengthen the immune system and actually work against the viruses so recovery is facilitated. It is also recommended to opt for some herbal medicines as a preventive measure, like an immune strengthening vaccine, at the onset of winter.
- Echinacea or Echinacea purpurea is effective in reducing the symptoms associated with influenza and cold. It also works against croup symptoms. The herb enhances the natural healing process in the body when the viruses have infected the airways. The herb also prevents mucus buildup in the bronchial and nasal passages. If a kid already has mucus buildup then the herbal extract will clear that from the nasal passage and bronchial passage.
- Elderflower or Sambucus nigra is another plant that has been widely used for various medicinal purposes. Its use dates back by more than two millennia. The berries and flowers of the plant have antibiotic and antiviral properties. The extract helps in managing fever. The herb is widely used for sinusitis, cold and catarrh. The herbal extract helps in clearing post nasal drip and runny noses. Elderflower is substantially effective at regulating the symptoms of croup and will facilitate a quick healing process.
- There are many other herbal remedies you can try. Some will help in alleviating some symptoms like discomfort in the chest, breathing problems and inflammation in the airways. Thyme helps provide relief from spasmodic coughs, Licorice will relax spasm in chest, Californian Poppy will ease the pain especially at night and Eucalyptus or Mint will make breathing easier.
As mentioned earlier herbal remedies work best when the infection is still in its nascent stage. Parents should seriously consider using these herbal remedies as preventive medication as well. Kids aged below three are particularly vulnerable to the viruses causing croup during the colder months. A little dose of the herbal remedies will pose no health risk and it will protect the kids from the viruses. Even if they get infected, the severity may be contained right from the onset. As a remedial measure, these herbal extracts must be used at least twice every day till there are surefire signs of recovery. For very serious symptoms, up to five doses every day are recommended.
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Remedies for Croup in Children
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