Yes, you’re right, croup seems to be worse at night. It often catches parents by surprise as they awaken to their child’s dry, barky cough. Croup is probably worse at night because of the dry air from the heater. The symptoms are due to swelling of the vocal cords caused by a virus. Parents usually can get through the first night with moist air from the shower, or taking baby outside on a foggy night. The next day, symptoms will probably improve somewhat, but then worsen again the second and third night. If croup is severe enough, children might needs special medications to help reduce the swelling of the vocal cords. Click here for our croup information page so you can read the danger signs to watch for.