Should You Take Your Child to Urgent Care or to the Emergency Room?

a baby clutches her ear in pain
Share This Post:

As a parent, there are few things worse than knowing that your child is sick or hurt. When your pediatrician’s office is closed, an urgent care center such as Integrity Urgent Care can be a much more cost-effective option than the emergency room. Urgent Care centers are open in the evenings and on weekends, and your child can be seen without an appointment.

Especially if you have an infant, it’s important to choose an urgent care center, such as Integrity Urgent Care, that has the experience and the knowledge to treat your child. The physicians and nurses at some urgent care centers have only had minimal training in pediatrics. Uncomfortable treating infants and young children, they may refer young patients to the emergency room who do not actually need emergency care.  

This guide can help you decide if your child needs to go to the emergency room or he or she can be treated at an Urgent Care Center. When unsure, don’t hesitate to call your pediatrician’s after hours’ line. They can help you decide what to do.

Consider taking your child to an urgent care center if you’re not able to see your pediatrician in the next day or so and:

  • Your child has a fever and cold symptoms – signs of the flu
  • Your child (more than six weeks old) has a fever without any other obvious symptoms.
  • You suspect your child might have an ear infection or a UTI.
  • Your child has a sore throat, with or without white patches on the tonsils, which may be a sign of strep throat.
  • You suspect your child has pink eye.
  • Your child has had a few episodes of vomiting or diarrhea but is not showing signs of dehydration.
  • Your child has a minor sprain, minor fracture or shallow cut.
  • Your child has a foreign object in their ear or nose.
  • You suspect your child has croup.
  • Your child is having mild to moderate asthma symptoms.
  • Your child is having a non-life threatening allergic reaction.
  • Your child has a concerning bug bite or rash.
  • You think that your child has a skin infection such as cellulitis.

Your child needs to go to the emergency room if:

  • You suspect the situation is life-threatening.
  • Your child is less than six weeks old and has a temperature above 100.4.
  • Your child has an open fracture – the bone has broken through the skin.
  • You child hits his or her head and appears to lose consciousness for a few seconds.
  • Your child had a seizure.
  • Your child has heavy, fast breathing and is gasping for air.
  • Your child has a gaping cut on his face.
  • Your child is coughing up or vomiting blood.

Integrity Urgent Care Clinic is now open and serving the Bryan/College Station area.  The clinic is open daily from 8 am – 8 pm. Walk-ins are encouraged and appointments are never necessary. For more information or if you have a question about whether or not you should bring your child to our clinic or take them to an emergency room, contact us!


Recent News:

Read Our Reviews