When to Worry: Bronchiolitis

Bronchiolitis is usually caused by a viral infection of your child's respiratory tract and might start off looking like a cold. Learn how to treat this condition and when you should worry.

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[MUSIC] Bronchiolitis is usually caused by a viral infection of your child's respiratory tract. Once infected the bronchials. The tiny airways that lead to the lungs become inflamed and filled with mucus. Bronchiolitis often affects children younger than five, especially those younger than two. Particularly in winter. At first your child may appear to have a cold but symptoms can progress to coughing, wheezing, difficulty breathing and ear infection. It can last from a few days to a month, and most cases can be treated at home. Give plenty of liquids and use saline nose drops or nasal suctioning if necessary. Call your doctor for vomiting, wheezing or rapid or shallow breathing, lethargy or an unwillingness or inability to eat or drink. Call 911 if your child has bluish skin or is struggling to breathe. When bronchiolitis is severe, younger babies and children may need to be hospitalized. In milder cases, make your child more comfortable by keeping him hydrated, using a cool mist vaporizer at night. Eat, keeping him upright and avoiding irritants like cigarette smoke. [MUSIC]

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