What Are the Risk Factors for Developing Croup in Children?


Quick Answer

Some possible risk factors for children developing croup include being between 6 months and 3 years of age orhaving recurrent respiratory infections, allergies or acid reflux. The most common ages for a child to contract croup is between 18 months and 2 years, and the illness is more common in the winter months from October to March, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

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Full Answer

Symptoms of croup include having difficulty breathing and experiencing a dry cough, which is often referred to as a "barking" cough. The illness can be caused by viral or bacterial infections and may also be caused by recurring throat irritation.

While most cases of croup today pass without any serious problems, the illness was once considered a deadly disease. Modern advancements in the use of antibiotics and supportive care have decreased the severity of the illness by helping children overcome the sickness faster and keeping them hydrated and nourished while ill.

Doctors generally diagnose croup by an in-person examination and evaluation of the child's symptoms, and the trademark sound of the croup cough is often pivotal to the diagnosis. Controlling cough with a vaporizer can help, but some children will need additional support, including steroid breathing treatments.

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