For many parents--particularly those on their first child--medical issues present a great deal of anxiety and stress. Most people aren't pediatricians, so it's difficult for them to know when their child's medical issues demand immediate attention. When combined with the typical office hours of most doctors, this leads to quite a few emergency phone calls and trips to urgent care.
Unfortunately, urgent care isn't designed to be a substitute for your doctor's attention or the emergency room. Understanding some of the medical issues that urgent care is equipped to handle for your child can help you determine the best course of action when an untimely malady creates a problem for your family.
One of the most common medical issues in infants and toddlers is an earache. In fact, it's estimated that 50% of toddlers will have had at least one ear infection by their first birthday. Since these pains can also come with fever, vomiting, and lethargy, it's no wonder that parents often rush their child to urgent care out of concern.
Fortunately, urgent care is well equipped to help with your child's earaches. If your child is the victim of persistent, repeated earaches, you should always let your physician know about the pattern. However, urgent care is a great choice for primary care when your child is suffering from an earache.
Minor Cuts and Wounds
Most parents wouldn't classify any cut or wound on their child as minor. That said, for many of the cuts and gashes that a child might experience in a typical day, urgent care is a good call. They can make sure that the wound is cleaned and treated effectively, and give you tips on helping your child manage their pain.
If, on the other hand, it seems like your child's injury will not stop bleeding, you should probably head straight to the emergency room. They are better equipped to handle the stitching or suturing that is required for particularly deep cuts. This is also true for cuts and injuries to the face.
Skin conditions present serious difficulty for children. They have soft, sensitive skin and are therefore susceptible to a variety of uncomfortable conditions. Also, since young children often lack impulse control, managing these conditions effectively is a problem.
Urgent care can help provide guidance, treatment, and management suggestions for children with rashes. From poison oak to allergic reactions, your urgent care provider can help your child find comfort while offering you peace of mind. They'll also be able to rule out any more immediate, severe causes of the condition.
Urgent care is an important resource that supports your child's health and wellness. While your doctor should always be informed of your child's condition, effective use of urgent care can make the life of parents much easier to manage.