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When to Get Emergency Care for Your Child

When to Get Emergency Care for Your Child

Many minor injuries can be handled at home. But there are times when a trip to an emergency room (ER) is needed. Take your child to an emergency room or urgent care clinic after an injury if your child has any of the below:

  • Trouble breathing

  • Coughing up blood 

  • Blue or purple color to lips, skin, or nails

  • Chest or stomach pain or pressure

  • Severe or ongoing vomiting or diarrhea 

  • Sudden dizziness, weakness, or change in vision

  • Loss of consciousness, confusion, or trouble waking

  • Seizures

  • Animal, snake, or human bites

  • Severe pain

  • Loss of motion or feeling anywhere in the body

  • Severe bleeding

  • Bleeding that does not stop with direct pressure

  • Severe burns

  • Burns of the face

  • Broken bones

  • Puncture wounds

  • Head, spinal cord, or eye injuries

  • Signs of an allergic reaction such as hives, swelling of the face, lips, eyes, or tongue, fainting, or trouble breathing, swallowing, or wheezing

  • Exposure to poison (also follow instructions from the Poison Control Center at (800) 222-1222)

This is not a full list. There are other problems that may need emergency care. Contact your child's healthcare provider for more information.

Reviewed Date: 02-01-2019

Minor Problem vs. a True Emergency

Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.