Health News

Urgent Care or Emergency Room? How to decide

When little ones are injured or feeling ill, we always want to take the best course of action. So as parents, how do we decide whether to go to the ER or urgent care?

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What’s Considered an Emergency?

In the event of a life threatening emergency, you should always visit the emergency room; especially when dealing with the following conditions:

  • Possible heart attack
  • Continuous bleeding
  • Possible internal bleeding
  • Trouble breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Paralysis
  • Poinsoning
  • Loss of vision
  • Seizures
  • Compound fracture (visible bone)
  • Serious head, neck or back trauma
  • Severe burns

When do you need urgent care?

Conditions suitable for urgent care are illnesses or injuries not considered an emergency but still require medical attention, such as:

  • Wound care that includes stitches for deep cuts
  • Broken bones or fractures that may require a cast or splint
  • Breathing treatment for asthma flair-ups
  • Diagnostic services that include X-ray and lab work
  • Infections and other conditions like: pink eye, lice, bronchitis, vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, fever, earache, minor burns, stomach ache
  • Severe cough, cold and flu
  • Sprains & strains
  • Select immunizations
  • Skin Conditions: rashes, poison ivy, eczema

If greater medical care is needed, many urgent care providers can refer patients to the appropriate specialists for further treatment.