Few things strike more fear into a parent’s heart than hearing their child has been seriously injured. The fact is that it happens. Every year, nearly 12 million people between the ages of 5 and 22 are injured playing sports. It ends up costing them at least 20 million school days. These injuries cost nearly $33 million each year in health care costs. The Emergency Room is no longer the only place to go. There are urgent care centers all over the country. There are nearly 20,000 doctors practicing at these centers that usually are open seven days a week. Many clinics do offer children s urgent care.
Football is the most common cause of children are taken for emergency room care or to an urgent care facility. The spots that follow are basketball, baseball and soccer.
In recent years, a lot more attention has been paid to the number of concussions players suffer from and what the long term implications of these injuries are. These are serious and potentially fatal injuries. Symptoms include dizziness, nausea and vomiting, headache, confusion, memory loss, confusion, slurred speech and changes in mood. Any of these symptoms warrant a visit as soon as possible to a physician because they are serious brain injuries. If you see your child suffer a head injury on the field or court, make them sit out for at least a little while so you or a medical professional can evaluate them. They may not really understand what is going on and will confused if they have a concussion.
Other common injuries include broken and bruised bones and sprains and strains. Many of the injuries kids suffer while playing sports are actually overuse injuries. That ankle might just have enough of playing and gave out for that reason. Stress fractures are overuse injuries. One way to keep out of children s urgent care centers is to be proactive in getting them care before they injure something. If you suspect they are playing too much or too hard, make them take a break. There’s no real benefit to “walking it off” or “playing through the pain.” An injured area needs some rest.
The areas most often impacted are the ankle, head, finger, knee and face.
Children s urgent care facilities may offer a better experience than an emergency room for these injuries. Walk in clinics can often see you sooner and they are not usually an intimidating as a pediatric emergency room. They are also much less chaotic and frantic than emergency rooms, with ambulances coming and going.
Before an injury happens talk to your pediatrician about urgent care facilities in the area. There might be some that they work with or think are better. It is good to have that information before you need it. When your children are hurt, it is very stressful. Not knowing where to go when that happens will only add to your stress.