Urgent care centers provide many medical services and often treat a large number of non-emergency health conditions. These centers are a great option for people who need care for a minor medical emergency. Going to an urgent care is also recommended when your regular doctor is not available. Read on to learn more about when…
Should I Go to Urgent Care or the Emergency Room?
An urgent care center is a great alternative to the emergency room, as well as to the traditional doctor’s office. Urgent care can be used for both urgent purposes as well as for routine healthcare.
When experiencing an injury or something that may seem like it requires immediate attention, it is appropriate to visit an urgent care center or the emergency room. However, being aware of when each is ideal can be helpful to someone who is not sure. In this article, we highlight which one you should visit and when.
Should I visit an urgent care center or the emergency room?
Below, we outline when it is appropriate to visit an urgent care center, as well as when the emergency room might be a better option. Keep reading to find out more.
When to go to urgent care
These facilities offer a lot of different services to patients of all ages, but one of the main things that they are known for is immediate or urgent care for a health-related problem. The doctors and nurses at an urgent care center can treat things such as a cold, the flu, stomachaches or infections — all of which can reach an urgent point.
Some other situations in which it is appropriate to visit urgent care include the following:
- Bumps, cuts or scrapes
- Minor burn or rash
- An allergic reaction
- Fractures, sprains or strains
- Joint, back or sinus pain
Urgent care facilities are equipped to handle just about any medical issue, however it is good to note that not all of them are open 24/7, which may result in a need for an emergency room visit.
When to go to the emergency room
When considering a visit to the emergency room, it is important to be aware of what is considered an emergency. Of course, doctors and nurses at the hospital won’t turn patients away but they may put a delay in care if the situation is not an emergency. Below, we outline some of the most common reasons why a patient should visit an ER:
- Head trauma: It is always a good idea to visit an ER if trauma to the head occurs. It is hard to say what is occurring inside of the head unless emergency scans are taken such as a CT scan or MRI
- Severe bleeding: If an accident occurs that causes non-stop bleeding then it is best to get to the emergency room right away
- Chest pain or difficulty breathing
- Stroke or loss of vision
Any condition that feels like it might be urgent or life-threatening should be addressed by an emergency doctor, especially in a situation where time is of the essence.
Any more questions about urgent care?
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