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Best cough medicine for a barking cough?

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#1 A home for their hearts

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 10:01 AM

My dd9 got a cold last week and is finally getting over it but now I'm afraid it has spread to my ds4. He has a very seal sounding cough with a runny nose. I'm going back and forth on taking him to the doctor, we are going out of town tomorrow so I would hate not to take him now and then need to take him when we are out of town. He doesn't have a fever. I'm wondering if it's the croup but he isn't hoarse. My dd9 cough didn't sounds so back so I didn't take her I believe she just had a cold. What to do!

#2 LisaK in VA is in IT

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 10:07 AM

Sounds like a croupy cough to me. I just had two boys with this.

As hot as they can stand it baths at night, we have a steam humidifier we add to the bedroom, Vicks Vapor Rub, and I had to use the triaminic cough strips (because my 5 yo spits out medicine).

For the throat (if sore), we used the Cloriseptic spray (they have a children's version in grape that my 5yo doesn't spit out).

My 5yo gets very bad with croup, so we also have to use an inhaler... last time (a year ago) without it, he was hospitalized.

#3 Tap


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Posted 19 December 2008 - 11:44 AM

I would take them into the doctor. Barky sounding coughs usually signify that something major is going on. Croup and whooping cough can both be contagious and you if you get them on an antibiotic today, they may not be contagious by tomorrow. The doctor can possibly prescribe an inhaler to open the airways up and give the child some relief too.

hope they feel better soon,

#4 hornblower


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Posted 19 December 2008 - 11:50 AM

Barking cough is not good.

Last month, my 6yo nephew ended up in ER on oxygen and steroids after just a bit of a barking cough.

It's a good thing they took him in to the hospital, because just as they were doing the admission paperwork, he went into full out respiratory distress.

My sil's heart stopped beating I'm sure as the nurses grabbed her son & rushed to the 'back' where she was not allowed to go.

And as I posted in another thread, Health Canada just announced changes to our regs - no OTC cough & cold meds for kids under 6 due to risk of adverse events.

#5 lmrich


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Posted 19 December 2008 - 11:53 AM

It sounds like the croup. It can get very serious quickly. Watch your child carefully for signs that his airway is closing. A round of steroids or breathing treaments are recommend for children who suffer. My two year old was hospitalized for three days with it. She gets it every year and really has a hard time breathing, my other children get it and have no problems, but the seal cough. I would call the nurse line and have them go over what to watch for (tripoding, blue lips, hysteria). We will say a prayer for you.

#6 Jennifer in MI

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 11:57 AM

Yes - doctor for a barky cough - especially right before you leave for vacation. I've had two children with croup and it can get VERY scary VERY fast. The last time we drove to the ER, my ds's finger and toenails and lips were turning blue and they whisked him away. By the time I got back to him he was on a breathing treatment of epinepherine and doing much better. Anyway, ds was also put on steriods, which helped emmensly. I don't think you can give inhaled epi at home (at least that's what I was told), but it wouldn't hurt to have some steroids.

In the meantime, steam helps. But, try alternating with the cold air from outside. A couple times I remember taking the croupy child out to go to the ER and they got better as soon as we got outside! I forget where you live, but you can also stick their head in the freezer to get cold air if it's not cold outside.

#7 coffeefreak


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Posted 19 December 2008 - 12:08 PM

Everyone's right, sounds like the Croup! My dd had the croup one time. They gave her a jello shot (yes, a little jello square full of steroids) at the hospital. She was better almost instantaneously. I'd say go now so you can get on with your trip. Beware though, the adult form of the croup is laryngitis.

#8 Suzanne in ABQ

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 01:37 PM

Take her to the ER. The doctor's office probably won't have the meds necessary to treat her. Even our Urgent Care doesn't have the right stuff. The ER takes croup very seriously, and we've never even had to wait in the ER waiting room. They've always (three times, so far) taken us right into triage, and then in for treatment.

That being said, the last time 3yodd had croup, we didn't take her in. I simply took her into the bathroom, and sat on the commode with her while the shower filled the room with steam. This clears her up enough to sleep, and she's always better in the morning.