Upper Respiratory Infections in Kids

A kid’s upper respiratory infection can be exceedingly uncomfortable and may take several days to clear up. KidsStreet Urgent Care is here to tell you all about upper respiratory infection in kids!

What Is An Upper Respiratory Infection?

An upper respiratory infection (URI) affects the upper respiratory tract. According to the National Library of Medicine, upper respiratory infections are the most common infectious diseases. These illnesses may affect the nose, nasal cavities, and nostrils, mouth, pharynx, larynx, epiglottis. Additionally, you can expect cold symptoms with many of these infections.

What Are The Symptoms?


The symptoms of respiratory infection can vary based on type, but tend to include: 


  • Coughing or sneezing
  • Sore throat
  • Trouble breathing
  • Drainage
  • Congestion 
  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Red eyes
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches

Types Of Upper Respiratory Infections


Many URI’s are typically known as seasonal illnesses, which affect people during certain parts of the year. However, your child can contract a URI at any time especially if they have a weak immune system. 

The Cleveland Clinic considers these to be the most common upper respiratory illnesses: 


  • Sinusitis (sinus infection) 
  • Laryngitis
  • Common cold or cold viruses 
  • Pharyngitis (sore throat) 
  • Epiglottitis 
  • RSV (can affect lower respiratory tract as well)

Diagnosing An Upper Respiratory Infection in Kids

Due to the commonality of upper respiratory illnesses, most of them can be self-diagnosed. Pediatric providers can also diagnose URI’s using methods such as chest x-ray, throat or nasal swab, or a lung CT. Are you worried that your child may be struggling with an upper respiratory infection? KidsStreet can diagnose them with our pediatric urgent care services

Treatment Options



Most children’s upper respiratory infections treatments generally consist of antibiotic treatment combined with at home treatment methods. Common home treatment options include:


  • Over the counter medications to treat fever and/or pain 
  • Ensure your child gets plenty of rest
  • Drink fluids to avoid dehydration
  • If throat pain is present, gargle with warm salt water

Prevention Methods

Kids can get a URI from other infected people, or by touching infected surfaces. Most of these illnesses are caused by viruses or bacteria invading the upper respiratory tract. 

 While not entirely avoidable, best practices for preventing the spread consist of: 


  • Wash hands thoroughly and often 
  • Keep children home when sick 
  • Avoid touching eyes, mouth, and nose 
  • Limit contact with highly used public surfaces
  • If you have multiple kids, clean toys between use 
  • If you do have to go out in public, make sure child covers their mouth and nose when they sneeze or cough

Upper Respiratory Infection Complications

There are several complications that can arise from untreated URI’s. URI complications include: 

  • Ear infections
  • Pneumonia
  • Bronchitis

Those that suffer with children’s asthma, compromised immune systems, or have heart/lung issues are more at risk for these complications.

Turn To KidsStreet Urgent Care

If your child is struggling with an upper respiratory illness, KidsStreet is here to help them heal and feel better fast! To visit one of our kid-focused clinics, register online. You will be able to wait from the comfort of your home or vehicle until we are ready for you, and we’ll send you a text when its time to head to the clinic. 

We love walk-ins! However, please be aware that walk-ins may experience longer in-clinic wait times than those who register online. Walk-ins are added to the same queue as those who register.

Why Choose KidsStreet urgent Care?

Turn to KidsStreet Urgent Care

Has your child sustained a minor burn or sunburn? KidsStreet Urgent Care would love to help them heal and feel better, fast!

To visit a clinic, register online. You can wait from your home or vehicle until we’re ready for you. 


Walk-in patients are always welcome, but please be aware that registering online reduces in-clinic wait times. Walk-ins are added to the same queue as those who register online.