When a child suffers a cut or laceration, it can be a scary experience for both the child and the parent. If the cut is significant, it may require stitches in order to heal properly. So, the question becomes, can my child get stitches at urgent care? The answer is yes, most urgent care facilities are equipped to handle simple stitching needs. However, there are some things to keep in mind.
Can My Child Get Stitches at Urgent Care?
If the cut is not too deep, the urgent care doctor may be able to close it with medical adhesive or medical “superglue.” This type of closure is typically used for cuts on the face, scalp, fingers, or toes. If the cut is deeper, the doctor may opt for traditional stitching. The type of stitching used will depend on the depth of the cut and the location of the cut. If the cut is on the face or scalp, the doctor may opt for absorbable sutures. These types of sutures will eventually dissolve on their own. If the cut is on the arm or leg, the doctor may opt for non-absorbable sutures. These types of sutures will need to be removed by the doctor.
How Long Will My Child Need Stitches?
The length of time your child will need stitches will depend on the depth of the cut. If the cut is shallow, the doctor may opt for medical adhesive or medical “superglue.” These types of closure typically do not require a return visit to have them removed. If the cut is deeper, the doctor may opt for traditional stitching. Traditional stitching will require a return visit to have the sutures removed.
How Do I Know If My Child Needs Stitches
If your child has suffered a cut or laceration, it’s best to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Urgent care is a great option for cuts and lacerations because they can be seen immediately and treated quickly.
If the cut or laceration is significantly deep, it will require stitches. A shallow cut or laceration may not require stitches, but you should still seek medical attention to ensure that the wound doesn’t need to be cleaned.
Types of Wounds That Require Stitches
There are a few different types of wounds that may require stitches.
Cuts: A cut is a wound caused by a sharp object. A sharp object can be anything from a knife to a piece of glass. If a cut is more than ½” deep, it may require stitches.
Lacerations: A laceration is a wound caused by blunt force trauma. A laceration can be caused by anything from a fall to a car accident. If a laceration is more than ½” deep, it may require stitches.
Punctures: A puncture is a wound caused by a sharp object, such as a nail or a piece of glass. A puncture can be deep, so it is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible.
What to Do after Your Child Gets Stitches
Once your child has received stitches, there are a few things to keep in mind in order to ensure proper healing.
- Keep the wound clean and dry.
- Change the bandage regularly.
- Apply pressure to the wound if it starts to bleed.
- Do not remove the stitches. The stitches will be removed by a medical professional.
It is important to know whether your child can get stitches at urgent care before you bring them in. Urgent care centers generally can provide stitches for lacerations, but it is always best to call ahead and check to be sure. If your child does need stitches, the urgent care staff will numb the area and then make small, precise stitches to close the wound. The entire process usually takes less than 30 minutes.
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