Throughout a child’s life, they are going to have times of coughing and wheezing as this seems to be one of the more common types of illnesses that children have. This does not necessarily mean that your child has something serious, even though coughing and wheezing may sound awful. Coughing is something that is actually helpful in clearing the airways of the throat and chest.
If the child starts to show more serious symptoms, such as if they stop breathing during a coughing or wheezing fit, then you may need to take your child to emergency medical professionals. If the child becomes in any way distressed, it is important to take your child to their doctor right away. You should also note that if your child has a violent coughing fit and did not feel ill prior to this, you need to check for choking, as this can become serious. In addition, in homes in which parents smoke, the chances of children having upper respiratory issues.
Causes of Coughing and Wheezing
There are several reasons why children start to cough and wheeze, some of these causes could be:
- Having a cold or other virus
- Croup which tends to be a hoarse, bark-like cough
- Bronchitis which is a chest infection
- Hay fever
- Whooping cough
When should you go to the Doctor?
There are times in which a child can stop breathing when there is a severe coughing attack. If this coughing attack or wheezing never stops, then the child will become even more distressed. This is when it may be time to take your child to the doctor. Other times in which you should consider emergency care:
- If the breathing becomes rapid or there are signs that the child is not breathing well
- If they are breathing and you can hear this breath
- If the skin becomes pale or blue
- When the child seems unusually tired
- If the child seems to be choking
- If there is something stuck in the nose
- When their fever is over 37’C
What to Do
- If your child starts to get a ‘’barky’’ type of cough, place them in a steamy room and sit with them for about 15 minutes.
- Make sure they are hydrated and have lots of fluids. Stay away from fizzy drinks that might aggravate a sore throat.
- Run a cool-mist humidifier in your child’s bedroom.
- You can make use of nose drops to alleviate blockage.
- Don’t give cold or cough treatment to kids beneath the age of 2 years. Speak to your GP first.