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Dry barking cough? croup or asthma?

My son is having a dry barking cough and sometimes sounds like he is almost gasping for air, like he can't get air through his airways. What I am wondering is does this sound like he is getting croup again or is this maybe his asthma acting up?

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Asked by Anonymous at 1:31 AM on Apr. 7, 2010 in Kids' Health

Answers (7)
  • Sounds to me like croup. Asthma you can hear a wheezing, my son has asthma and he realy does not cough when he has attacks but my other son does get croup and that is a horrible sounding cough

    Answer by hisblueeyes at 1:36 AM on Apr. 7, 2010

  • Is he having trouble breathing? It could really be either one, is he having signs of distress? is there wheezing? If it is just croup typically you wont see the other signs that are asthma. Depending on your childs age you can ask questions or you will need to listen to the breathing and the noises. If you think it is asthma and a breathing treatment doesnt relieve the symptoms then a trip to the urgent care would probably be a good idea just to make sure everything is okay.

    Answer by 3_ring_circus_ at 1:38 AM on Apr. 7, 2010

  • Thanks for he quick responses. We have found that it is only happening when he wakes from naps or when he wakes up (like just now he kinda woke up b/c we have to change his diaper when we go to bed cuz he pees a lot, lol). But he does sound a little wheezy but it sounds more like a seal when trying to breathe in and he has a really horse voice. I know when I have attacks I usually cough a lot (I've had asthma since I was a child) but with my son he usually wheezes so the coughing I was having a hard time deciphering, kwim? I am going to check on him again and see how he sounds though and I think we will try a treatment. He sounds pretty bad and more over I feel bad for him.

    He isn't having any signs of distress though. He is irritable but we chalked that up to being tired and us waking him, kwim?

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:42 AM on Apr. 7, 2010

  • My middle son gets croup at least twice in the fall and sounds like croup if its a "barking" cough. Croup is not in the lungs, but is an inflamation of the larnex so a cool mist vaporizor helps a lot. You can also try taking him into the bathroom with the hot shower water running, or at night sitting outside in the cool air helps as well. I know it sounds scary. My son is 3 now and seems to get it less often.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:58 PM on Apr. 7, 2010

  • It doesnt sound like asthma at all so my guess is croup. My son has asthma, reflex airway disease and restricted airway disease so I am very familiar with asthma and breathing difficulties. Although he has chronic (constant) bronchitis and gets aspiration pneumonia every 4-6 weeks, I can say that he has never gotten croup! It makes no sense to me but thankfully he has never gotten it. But I am very familiar with what it sounds like and once you said "barking" thats a sure sign of croup

    Answer by Jaydin_Makenna at 7:52 PM on Apr. 7, 2010

  • It sounds like croup, especially since it happens when he sleeps. My oldest had croup for the first time a month or so ago. It as that dry barking cough and it sounds like she can't get air back in when she inhales. Put a humidifier in his room when he sleeps. I bet it will help.

    Answer by mommy2aftan at 10:45 AM on Apr. 9, 2010

  • I'd take him to the Dr's.

    Answer by sstepph at 10:34 AM on Sep. 15, 2010

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