Laryngitis In Children: Symptoms And Treatment

Laryngitis in children is one of the most common reasons for attending pediatric emergencies. The respiratory symptoms that accompany this pathology can generate restlessness in parents. This can lead to inappropriate behavior.

There are remedies to prevent the worsening of laryngitis in children and, thus,  reduce the complications that may arise. Prevention is one of the most important aspects when it comes to avoiding the most relevant consequences of this condition. Find out how to act below.

What is laryngitis in children?

Laryngitis is a respiratory disease that usually begins acutely, that is, it presents with a sudden onset and a rapid evolution. Thus, an inflammation of the larynx appears that is usually caused by an infection by viruses or bacteria, although the latter is less frequent, as evidenced by this study published in the Annals of Pediatrics .

When a disease is caused by a virus, the available medications focus on alleviating the symptoms, since it is the body itself that will eliminate the infection. For this reason, it is essential not to self-medicate children, so that no treatment should be given without a prescription.

In most cases, laryngitis in children is usually mild. The best measure is prevention. Still, it is important to know what symptoms should cause alarm to go to medical services.

How to prevent laryngitis in children?

The main action to reduce the risks of contracting this disease is to implement prevention habits, as indicated in this information from the Spanish Association of Pediatrics (AEP). To do this, attend to the following:

  • Wash your hands. The main means by which viruses and bacteria are transmitted are the hands. It is important to educate our children in frequent hygiene of them.
  • Smoke. Avoid smoky environments at home and near children. Be aware of the importance of eliminating harmful behaviors.
  • Adequate hydration. It is important to offer children water frequently and take care of the hydration of the skin. Pay more attention to this point after practicing physical exercise.
  • Increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables. The contribution of vitamins in these foods favors the activity of the immune system.
  • Avoid contact with sick people. It is not recommended that children go to visit family or friends who have any type of illness, especially respiratory illnesses. Avoid going to a hospital to make a visit.

Symptoms of laryngitis in children

Laryngitis in children can appear in many forms, but the most frequent, as indicated by this information from the Hospital Ruber Internacional, are the following pictures:

  • Cough. It is one of the symptoms that can worry parents the most when it appears compulsively and does not let children rest, since it is a dry and strong cough, similar to the barking of a dog.
  • Hoarseness or hoarseness. There is a change in the tone of the voice of children generated by inflammation of the vocal cords.
  • Pain on swallowing. The child may report pain when swallowing throughout the day that is enhanced by consuming some solid food.
  • Shortness of breath. A small hiss or straining sound may appear when the little one breathes in air. If it is intense, it is heard without auscultation. This is the main reason why you have to go to the emergency service.

Warning signs and when to go to the hospital

There are specific situations in which adults must have some knowledge in order to act in the most appropriate way.

Shortness of breath

Boy in bed with fever

Respiratory difficulty is perceived when assessing that the child has trouble breathing in air. A greater intensity thoracic or abdominal movement is observed. The intercostal pull can be seen. This is characterized by an inward movement of the muscles between the ribs.

On some occasions it is accompanied by a respiratory noise of effort. It is an alarm sign and the transfer to the hospital for the evaluation by a doctor should be immediate.


This sign is only considered an alarm when it meets certain characteristics, for example, if it exceeds 39 ° C at any time, is higher than 37.5 ° C for more than 3 consecutive days, or does not respond to antipyretic or antipyretic treatments prescribed by the pediatrician.

You should not do self-medication, that is, you should never give a drug if a doctor has not prescribed it. In short, laryngitis in children can cause various discomforts ranging from coughing to breathing difficulties. However, with due care and timely attention, complications can be avoided.

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