What Are the Symptoms of Croup?
Croup usually starts as a cold. Your child might have a runny or stuffy nose and a fever. But it doesn’t take long before your little one’s symptoms turn into something else.
A virus usually causes croup. Your child may get it by breathing infected droplets or touching a germy surface and then their eyes, nose, or mouth. Here are the signs your child may have croup:
A cough that sounds like a bark
Hoarse or raspy voice
Noisy, labored breathing
Fever (in some cases)
Croup symptoms may be worse at night and usually last 3 to 5 days.
Serious Croup Symptoms
Call your doctor if symptoms don’t improve after 3 to 5 days or if they get worse. See your doctor right away if your child:
Makes a noisy, high-pitched breathing sound (doctors call it stridor) when they breathe in or out
Starts drooling or has a hard time swallowing
Is anxious or agitated, or has no energy
Breathes much faster than usual
Has a hard time breathing (chest muscles pull in)
Turns gray or blue around their nose, mouth, or fingernails
Seems to be dehydrated, with dry lips or tongue, and/or no urine output