How Are Omicron and Croup Related?

While it’s very rare for people over the age of 5 to get croup, it’s a very common respiratory infection for young children. Plus, experts have noticed that omicron cases among young children have brought on croup-like symptoms.

To learn more, check out what our AFC Urgent Care Knoxville team has to say below!

What Is Croup?

Croup is a respiratory infection that almost exclusively affects children between the ages of 3 months and 5 years. It causes swelling of the airways and vocal cords, which leads to difficulty breathing and a loud cough that sounds like a high-pitched seal or dog bark.

Since croup is most often caused by a virus, it’s contagious. Children with croup should be considered contagious for three days after the illness begins or until the fever, which is a common symptom, is gone.

Common Croup Symptoms

  • A runny, stuffy nose
  • A cough that turns into a “seal’s bark”
  • Laryngitis
  • Fever
  • A whistling sound when breathing, which is often referred to as “stridor”

Do All Omicron Cases Lead to Croup?

No, not all. Since the omicron variant is still under the COVID-19 umbrella, each case will look different among young children. Some might experience croup-like symptoms, and some won’t.

Croup could be a common manifestation of the virus in the future, with this variant and others. Even so, it’s always important to encourage your child to take steps to protect him or herself from getting sick, and we’ve listed some ways to do so below.

Ways to Prevent Croup

  • Make sure your child is frequently washing his or her hands for a least 20 seconds each time.
  • Keep your child away from anyone who’s sick.
  • Encourage your child to cough or sneeze into his or her elbow.

Are you or your child in need of non-emergency medical care? We’ve got you covered! Don’t hesitate to visit our AFC Urgent Care Knoxville team today.