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Just imagine a scenario. You are not feeling physically well (due to an injury, illness, or any other reason) and want to have an immediate health check. What options do you have? You can make an appointment with your primary care provider, but we all know it can be quite difficult to get medical treatment from your primary physician right away. First, primary care physicians don’t typically take walk-ins like urgent care facilities. Second, what if you are not feeling well after-hours? The majority (almost 70 percent) of primary care physicians don’t offer after-hours services.
Let’s move to the second option, the Emergency Room (ER). You are not reeling from a life-threatening medical condition, but still end up in an ER. You have to wait longer because most of the ERs are always preoccupied in serving more severe and life-threatening cases. Moreover, you will need to pay more for the treatment since ER services are expensive.
So, in cases where you can’t reach your primary healthcare option and your condition doesn’t require an ER visit but you still want immediate medical attention, an urgent care facility is the place to visit.
Urgent care provides a professional treatment for many types of ailments or injuries on immediate basis without issuing hefty bills. They provide medical treatments like any other healthcare facility, but with some additional benefits.
Difference Between Urgent Care Facilities and Emergency Rooms
Many people confuse urgent care facilities and emergency rooms with each other. While in some cases both can be visited interchangeably, it is important to understand the difference between the two. In simple words, for all life-threatening medical conditions, one should visit the emergency room. For limb-threatening injuries where amputation and spread of infection is looming, it is advised to make a visit to an emergency room instead of an urgent care facility.
On the other hand, for all those medical conditions that don’t appear to be life-threatening but require medical assistance within 24 hours, one should be referred to urgent care facilities.
What are Life-Threatening Injuries?
Conditions Treated at Urgent Care Facilities
Injuries and Infections Treated at Urgent Care Facilities
Respiratory infections, particularly of the upper respiratory tract, are the most common type of medical condition that is treated at urgent care facilities. These infections are really bothersome and people don’t want to wait for primary care appointments for a treatment. In most respiratory infections, the throat, larynx, sinuses, and nasal cavity bear the brunt.
Oftentimes, viral respiratory infections become contagious and many people are suffering from them at the same time. This means it can become even more difficult to get a quick appointment with your primary care physician. In such situations, urgent care facilities come in handy. Chest congestion, sneezing, intense coughing, and body fatigue are the most common symptoms of respiratory infections.
A sprain is any injury that damages a ligament. Ligaments are strong connective tissues that hold together bones and joints. Ligaments can be torn when a player falls with an impact or collides with another player with full force. Twisting of joints while running or tackling can also lead to sprains.
In most cases, urgent care physicians use the PRICE method to treat patients coming in with sprains. It stands for Protection, Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. These five steps are part of any professional treatment prescribed for sprains.
All these above-discussed injuries are not just limited to the arena of sports. Road accidents, domestic mishaps, and any type of physical assault can also bring about these injuries. Regardless of the cause that has led to the injury, it is always better to go to any nearby urgent care facility.
Ear infections happen when fluid gets trapped in the middle of the ear. Symptoms of an ear infection can include yellow fluid coming out of the ear and pain in the ear. Ear infections can often be happen when you have a cold or flu, but have also been caused by other respiratory infections.
Shallow Lacerations and Cuts
Urinary Tract Infection
Bacterial infections of the urinary tract can affect people of all ages. However, mostly women become affected by Urinary Tract Infection (UTI). These infections of moderate levels can be easily treated at urgent care facilities with the administration of prescription drugs. For severe cases of UTI, it is advised to plan a comprehensive treatment because it can spread to the kidneys.
Patients who are suffering from ear and yeast infections can also avail the medical treatment of urgent care facilities if they don’t want to wait longer for regular doctor appointments.
Symptoms can help you know if urgent care is the right choice
Rashes seem very harmless, but they can cause a lot of trouble. No one wants to spend even a minute with painful, itchy, and unrelenting sensation on the skin and rashes bring exactly all of this. Rashes are not always caused by any adverse external environment. You can even get them with the exposure to any specific type of fabric or jewelry. Soaps, detergents, and cosmetic products can also cause skin rashes. Parasite bites are also notorious for exasperating skin rashes.
If you can’t treat them with home remedies, then there is no need to put up with the irritation of rashes. You must visit the nearest urgent care facility to get rid of the physical symptoms of rashes, and to get back your peace of mind.
Minor Abdominal Pains and Cramps
Even though the majority of people prefer to go for over-the-counter drugs and home remedies to treat headaches, many times these low potency options fail. In that case, instead of going to the ER and getting expensive medical bills, it is better to get an immediate headache treatment at any nearby urgent care facility.
Besides these discussed symptoms, you can visit an urgent care facility when you are just not feeling well and don’t know how to undo that unpleasant sensation.
Benefits of Using Urgent Care as Immediate Medical Assistance
Fully Professional Treatment
No Long Wait Times
For many patients, this is the number one concern and rightly so. We generally hate to wait, even when all is good with our health. Waiting becomes more detestable when you are not feeling well or reeling from pain. We know that wait times for primary care appointments can extend to weeks. On the other hand, ERs also are always swarmed with patients, particularly with very serious cases.
In a situation in which you are not suffering from any life-threatening condition but also want to get rid of the inconvenience and suffering of the illness or injury immediately, urgent care facilities are always a good option. You can get relief from the illness on the same day without spending a lot of money and without making any prior appointments.
As mentioned earlier, you will not be required to make any prior appointment to get medical assistance in urgent care facilities. Just enter the premises, wait for a short time and you will be treated accordingly.
Urgent care facilities are an integral part of your healthcare sector. They are open seven days per week and most of them serve even after working hours, making them an ideal choice for immediate medical treatment.