A common, yet sometimes frightening childhood virus, the croup, an inflammation of the larynx and the trachea, is distinctive in its bark-like cough.

What are the symptoms?

  • Cold symptoms and fever
  • Hoarse voice, barking cough
  • Rapid noisy breathing, difficult breathing

How does it spread?

  • Direct contact
  • Indirect contact with germs from the nose or mouth (on hands, toys, tissues, etc.)
  • Droplets transmission (when a child coughs or sneezes and droplets reach other children who are close by)

What can you do as a parent to help your child?

  • Offer your child fluids and encourage him or her to rest
  • Give acetaminophen (such as Tempra®) or ibuprofen for fever. The Canadian Paediatric Society does not recommend giving Ibuprofen to babies under 6 months old without first talking to your physician.
  • Clear nasal congestion with a rubber suction bulb and saline (saltwater) nose drops
  • In older children, offer salt water for gargling to help ease a sore throat
  • Consult a doctor if symptoms persist or worsen