Bumps and bruises, scrapes and falls are all very typical for kids. But many cuts and scrapes leave parents wondering if their child needs stitches. The risk for infection increases the longer the wound stays open, so it’s important to determine whether it needs to be closed by a doctor.
General Rules for Stitches
If there is any doubt on whether or not a cut needs stitches, its best to seek the advice of a medical professional. Generally, a deep wound of 1/4 inch or longer will need stitches to help prevent an infection and minimize scarring. You’ll definitely want to go to pediatric urgent care, like AllKids Urgent Care, or your pediatrician’s office if the cut is:
Bleeding and doesn’t stop within 10 minutes of applying firm pressure.
If debris won’t wash out of the wound.
If the wound was caused by something dirty or rusty.
If the wound was caused by a bite either from an animal or another child.
When to Get Stitches
It’s recommend that you get stitches within 6-8 hours of the incident. Getting stitches after that timeframe means the stitches may not hold and infection is more likely.
After Getting Stitches
To start the healing process after stitches, keep the wound dry for the first 24 hours and try not to let it get wet until the stitches have dissolved or are removed. Don’t let your child pick at the stitches and remember to get the wound checked out if you see any signs of infection.
Stitches at AllKids Urgent Care
We know that it’s scary any time your child is sick or wounded, but rest assured that AllKids Urgent Care is here to help guide you every step of the way with caring and knowledgeable pediatric staff. We are a full-service pediatric clinic with a lab where we take care of stitches and X-rays, saving you time and the expense of the Emergency Room.
Our Mesa Pediatric Urgent Care and our Gilbert Pediatric Urgent Care are open from noon to 10 pm every day.