6 Croup remedies
Updated: Feb 13
What is croup?
Croup is a predominantly childhood complaint that comes on in the winter months. It is characterised by a cough that sounds like a dog or seal barking. The airways become inflamed making them narrower and breathing becomes more difficult and noisy. It is a childhood complaint, and it is rare for an adult to get croup.
A barking cough - which can be harsh and raspy and almost certainly makes both the child and parent extremely anxious. It is not your typical cough, so it is unlikely that a parent will have heard it before.
Stridor – which can accompany croup. This is a whistling, high pitched sound or a hollow, raspy noise on breathing, and worse on inspiration.
Hoarseness – accompanies the above symptoms.
ACONITE: This is the first remedy to think of for a croupy cough. Usually, the croup will have started suddenly after exposure to cold, dry weather/wind. The cough comes on in the late evening/night, and will be accompanied by anxiety and fear.
Cough: dry, barking, hacking, hoarse, with laboured breathing. Child grasps at throat every time s/he coughs. Breathing can be loud and laboured.
Worse: night, around midnight, dry cold wind, warm room
SPONGIA: This is one of the main croup remedies, and quite similar to Aconite. If Aconite is indicated but does not help, then try Spongia. They share a sense of acute anxiety and feeling worse around midnight. There is great dryness of the air passages.
Cough: Constant, dry, barking, hollow, in fits. The voice can be hoarse and hollow. Chest can feel bruised from coughing. Feeling of a plug in the larynx. Breathing is short, with panting.
Worse: midnight, after sleep, talking.
Better: eating and drinking
HEPAR SULPH: Children needing Hepar Sulph will feel the cold intensely and will want to be wrapped up warmly. They hate the cold, and if any part of their body is exposed, they will feel it intensely. If the croup is worse in the very early morning, then think Hepar Sulph.
Cough: Dry, hoarse, barking during evening/night, loose and rattling in the morning. Choking cough. Rattling croaking cough. Suffocative attacks.
Worse: cold, draughts, touch, being uncovered.
Better: being wrapped up, heat
IODUM: The child will grasp throat while coughing and there might be a tickling feeling provoking the cough.
Cough: dry, hoarse, raw with difficult inspiration. Morning cough.
Worse: damp weather, indoors, warm weather, lying on back
Better: eating, open air
KALI BICH: The mucous membranes are affected, and a very strong guiding symptom for Kali bich is the tough, stringy, ropy, yellow catarrh which is difficult to cough up. The chest can feel sore and bruised and the pains move from front to back.
Cough: croupy with a metallic, brassy sound with mucous difficult to expectorate. Hoarse voice.
Worse: summer, morning, hot weather.
PHOSPHORUS: The chest can feel tight and heavy, and breathing can be difficult and fast.
Cough: tickling, hard, dry, hacking, violent croupy cough. Child must sit up when awakened by cough at night. Larynx very painful. Expectoration in the morning can be clear/white/yellow/green or blood streaked, with a sweetish taste.
Worse: change of weather, evening, warm food/drink, wind.
Better: cold drinks, massage, company, touch, affection
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