How to Use a Nebulizer to Ease Croup

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Croup is a viral respiratory illness that causes the vocal cords and trachea to become swollen. This results in a difficulty breathing and a loud, rough cough. Croup occurs most frequently in children, though adults may also get it. Severe cases of croup may be treated with a nebulizer to ease the symptoms, restore breathing and relax the airways.

Things You'll Need

  • Nebulizer
  • Prescription medication

Connect the nebulizer machine to a power source. Connect the plastic tubing to the air outlet on the front of the nebulizer.

Plug the plastic hose into the bottom of the nebulizer's medicine cup. Dispense a dose of prescription medicine as directed by your physician into the bottom of the medicine cup. This is typically epinephrine or albuterol, which is also used to treat asthma.

Place the medicine cup's mouthpiece in your mouth. Turn on the nebulizer. It will begin aerating the medicine and creating a vapor.

Breathe in deeply. Hold your breath for 20 to 30 seconds, then exhale. Repeat the inhalation and exhalation process until there is no medicine left in the nebulizer's medicine cup. This may take up to 30 minutes depending on your breathing rate.

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