Last year, we visited the ER in the middle of the night 6 times with my two year old Tyler. It was a rough winter for us health wise and almost every time Tylergot sick, he would wake in the middle of the night with a croupy sounding cough and very loud breathing. The doctors called the breathing issue “stridor.” According to Wikipedia, “stridor is a high pitched wheezing sound resulting from turbulent air flow in the upper airway. Stridor is a physical sign which is produced by narrow or obstructed airway path.” Let me tell you what an awful sound that was to be awakened to at 1:00 am.
I actually think it always sounded a little worse than it actually was, but still very scary!
The routine went something like this: Tyler would awaken us with his cough and gasping cry. We always tried the steamy shower thing, as well as taking him outside in the cold air to help open up his airways. The first time he got it though, was at the end of last August! None of the home methods ever seemed to work for him and he would need medical intervention. We always began by calling our pediatrician’s emergency service. Then they, once they heard what Tyler’s breathing sounded like, would always then refer us to the ER.
Once at the ER, we usually got in pretty quickly. They would diagnose Tylerand then begin treatment. He usually had a nebulizer treatment but sometimes required a shot of a steroid. The medications were good for about 2 hours so we always had to stay to make sure the stridor didn’t return once it wore off. Well, by that time my very active little man, who was now pumped up on steroids, would begin to do laps around the hospital hallways. Once he felt better, he was always eager to let the exploring begin!
I have heard very mixed reviews about the Saratoga Hospital but as a frequent flier, I have to say we’ve always had a great experience there.
After repeated occurrences with croup, we consulted our ENT (Ear, Nose & Throat Dr.) Dr. Mouzakes about it- who by the way is absolutely amazing!! He has a great manner with the kids and quickly establishes a good rapport with them. I would highly recommend him to anyone. He put in two of my three kids ear tubes and finally helped us out with Tyler’s croup. He prescribed him a dose of Singulair last spring and Tyler has done great on it.
For about a week now though,all three of my boys have been sick with a really nasty cold. I kept watching Tyler like a hawk, going to bed early to prepare for the middle of the night drama. The first few nights he slept great but the past couple he has awoken with a very croupy cough. However, no stridor! Once he’s up and moving around, the cough goes away and he sounds like his regular adorable little self. I’m definitely not one to be in favor of prescribing regular medications for kids, but this one is a real necessity for us right now. I’m hoping he’ll begin to outgrow his tendency to get croup, as his body and airways continue to get bigger. In the meantime though, we continue with our meds and follow up with Dr. Mouzakes.
Do you have a child that has had issues with croup? I’d love to share stories with other parents of how they helped their child.