Coughing in Children – When to See the Doctor

It can be scary when your child suddenly starts coughing, but it’s usually not a sign of anything serious. Adults and children alike cough every once in a while. But there are some instances where a trip to the doctor may be needed. Here are a few examples.

Difficulty Breathing

If your child is having a hard time breathing, or is breathing rapidly, you should get medical care. This will especially be true if your child doesn’t want to eat, or seems to be sucking air around the neck or the ribs.

Fever

Just like coughing, a fever is usually not a sign of a serious problem. But if the fever is still present after 3-5 days or gets to 102 degrees or higher, get to a doctor. You want to make sure there isn’t some sort of severe infection.

Coughing With Wheezing

If you hear a wheezing sound along with the coughing, you might want to play it safe and see a doctor. It can be difficult to actually tell if wheezing is happening. For example, there might be a lot of phlegm in the chest. That could make it seem like the child is wheezing when he or she actually isn’t wheezing. Get to the doctor so you can rule out anything serious.

A “Barking” Type of Cough

This could mean that there’s something wrong with the child’s upper respiratory system. Call your doctor to see if a visit might be warranted.

Whatever the reason for your child’s cough, the doctors at Pediatric Healthcare of Northwest Houston will be ready to diagnose the cause and determine the right course of treatment. Contact us online or call (281) 655-1500 (Houston) or (936) 539-8190 (The Woodlands/Conroe) for more information or to schedule an appointment.

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