Midget Gem, the king of all snot related disease, has croup!
He's had a cold for a week or so - which isn't unusual for him - I think he's had around three days without a snotty face since he was born.
Last night he woke coughing - at least I think he was coughing - judging by the sound of him he MAY just have smuggled a seal into his bed and was clubbing it to death. Hard to tell.
Oh no - not all THAT hard - at least not when he coughed so much he puked all over my lap. That is NOT fun at midnight in a house with no heating, let me tell you!
So this morning we popped to the GP and she gave him a lot of pokes, prods, tickles and listens and settled on the diagnosis of croup. AKA a nasty virus which has made him chesty and throaty.
Croup isn't just one simple condition - according to her and my googling - it's the name given to a few different things which result in the same narrowing of the upper airways which makes breathing harder and the cough worse - which leads to the familiar barking sound.
If you've never heard croup it sounds like this http://assets.babycenter.com/ims/Symptom-Guide/Croup.mp3 (thank you Babycentre, once again) that isn't Midget Gem but it sounds EXACTLY like he sounds. There's also a nice wheezy noise when he breathes in which is pretty scary.
The GP said she wouldn't recommend anti biotics (unless it gets very bad in which case maybe!) and gave me some advice.
Her advice and my googling have given me my course of action; if you ever have a small one with croup here are my top tips to get through it.
The cough is worse at night than in the daytime - but after his nap he was bad again so I took action!
First of all - ease the breathing; steam is good here. Take the small person in the bath, or sit in the bathroom with the shower running (I did that this afternoon and we drew things on the steamed up mirror and blew bubbles).
I put olbas oil on EVERYTHING. The house stinks of it but it helps - and at least it smells NICE - he takes big deep sniffs and loves it - they both love it actually, call it magic potion.
I got some vapo rub and have applied liberally front and back (and to his feet - I can't understand how this might help but twitter says it does and twitter wouldn't lie, right?!).
For bed I hid his dummy so he wouldn't be stuck breathing through a snotty bunged up nose and have given him extra pillows so he's sleeping propped more upright.
When he cries his breathing gets more laboured (and a big bout of cough makes him cry, then he can't catch his breath which is scary, so he cries more) so I have been distracting, soothing, cuddling, holding, singing, and calming - the less he cries the better it is.
He's been guzzling warm orange squash all day and I've kept him topped up with calpol (per the correct advised amounts of course) to keep his temp down.
These are all my top tips for treating croup - if your child seems to be getting worse don't just slap around more olbas oil, give the doctor a ring or, if their breathing is really laboured, 999 and off to A&E as they might need some corticosteroids or adrenaline to ease their symptoms. This advice is only for mild croup and my GP will keep an eye on him - if he gets worse or no better in a few days we'll be right back there!
In the meantime, Dr Ranj and Get Well Soon are helping!