Urgent Care vs ER: Concussions
Traumatic brain injuries are some of the most dangerous and are of great concern as far as the medical community is concerned as they contribute to a sizeable amount of injury deaths. The most common of these traumatic brain injuries, and arguably the least serious is the concussion. It is mostly caused by a sudden direct blow to the head which can be due to a number of causes such as sports, falls, car accidents, from fighting, work-related blows among others. What happens when you receive a blow to the head is that the impact of the blow may jolt your brain and even make it move around in the head. This impact may lead to bruising, damage or injury to nerves and blood vessels in the brain which may lead to the brain not functioning as normal. Given the critical nature of a blow to the head it is important to know the scenarios that should lead to a visit to urgent care as well as those that should lead to one heading over to the ER, which this article will look to do.
First of we are going to take a look at some of the cases that should lead to a visit to urgent care as far as concussions are concerned. If you have suffered a blow to the head and haven’t suffered a loss in consciousness, then it is advised that you don’t take any chances but head over to urgent care just to be safe. If also after the blow to the head, you either didn’t experience any nausea or vomiting or if you did, the symptoms didn’t last longer than 15 minutes, then visiting urgent care may be the thing to do as you most probably may have suffered a grade 1 concussion which should clear after medical attention and appropriate treatment from urgent care. You will also be given instructions on the right course of action to take to ensure that you don’t put yourself into greater risk.
However, given the seriousness of traumatic brain injuries, most of the time if you have suffered a concussion you are well served in visiting an ER as soon as possible. This is because that it is only in an ER where the extent of your injury can be fully assessed with the use of a CT scan and X-rays, as is discussed over at frontlineer.com, the best place to visit for the same. It is only through these tests that you will be able to find out if you a skull fracture, if there is swelling around your brain among others. Unfortunately, urgent care doesn’t have direct access to the equipment used for diagnosis and as such are not the best place to go if you have concussion especially grade 2 and grade 3 concussions. This is why you will find that if you head over to urgent care with concussion, nine times out of ten you will be referred over to an ER so that you can be better assessed and diagnosed. It is therefore recommended that if you have suffered a concussion, you head over to an emergency room and not urgent care, unless your symptoms indicate you may just have suffered grade 1 concussion.
Having said that, it is prudent we highlight some of the red flags to look out for as far as concussions are concerned, those that if you see them, then you should visit an ER as soon as you can. If after receiving the blow to the head you experienced a loss of consciousness, even if it was just momentary and for a few seconds, you should visit an ER as this is a sign of grade 3 concussion and should be taken seriously, as you will see over at frontlineer.com, the best place to check out for the same. If you also begin to experience a sense of confusion and disorientation after the injury, then you should also definitely visit an emergency room. A persistent headache as well as vomiting and nausea should also definitely lead to a visit to an ER. If after the injury one begins to discharge clear fluid or blood from their nose or ears, then this should be taken quite seriously and they should be taken to an emergency room as soon as possible. Other symptoms to keep an eye out for include seizures, unusual behavior, numbness, general body weakness which is unexplained, slurred speech and other speech related problems, difficulty with eye movements, difficulty in staying alert or waking up as well as a headache that won’t ease but is actually worsening. If you observe these symptoms in someone who has suffered a blow to the head, you should take them to the ER as soon as possible.
From the foregoing, it is clear that traumatic brain injuries like concussions are dangerous and as such if one suspects they have one, they are best served in going to an ER which has the diagnostic equipment required, rather than urgent care. As usual, there is more on this and other topics to be found over at the ever reliable, and also the best place to visit for services on the same, frontlineer.com.