If you have to visit an urgent care facility, it’s never a fun time. You don’t go to the urgent care for good reasons. It’s always because you don’t feel good or have something wrong with you. When you have to go to an urgent care facility because of children, it can be that much more intense. There are many specific urgent care clinics for kids or pediatric urgent cares but there are ways that you can make a trip to the urgent care facility just a little more bearable while having children. Here are a few ideas of things you can do for kids to make the urgent care visits not so dreaded.
Food is key. Bring along the kids’ favorite snacks and that should keep them occupied for a little while. Especially if it is food that they normally do not eat. New foods have a way of entertaining kids as they explore their taste buds. Don’t worry about trying to keep it healthy either. Trips to the hospital and the doctor’s office and urgent care and even the dentist can be scary for kids but having new and fun and tasty snacks will distract them from the fluorescent lights and the unfamiliar smells that surround them, reminding them of the impending shots and possible treatments and uncomfortable things that make happen.
It’s all about occupying them during the waiting period. The good thing about urgent care compared to the emergency room is that urgent care has a much shorter wait time. Emergency rooms can be hours upon hours of waiting while an urgent care will likely be no longer than 20 minutes. If you don’t often allow your children to play video games, this might be a good time to break out the tablet. Your kids will be completely enamored by the moving pictures that they are able to control. If you still don’t want to let them use tablets or electronics then you could buy them a new board game that does not contain a lot of pieces or parts that could get lost while you are out. This way they can play the game with each other in a contained area like the waiting room.
- Role Playing
A great way to prepare your children for a trip to an urgent care facility is to have previously been role playing doctor and patients. Kids love to play pretend so letting them take turns being the patient or the doctor is a great way to get them to look forward to meeting a real doctor in order to enhance their character when they go back and play. While playing pretend, it’s a good idea to get them to pretend that they are in the waiting room as well. Try and get them to play longer and longer so that eventually they are pretending to wait in the waiting room for the actual amount of time that you expect to be there. This way when they are in the waiting room, it can be apart of their games.
A great way to break up the waiting period is to go for walks. Kids don’t like the monotony of sitting there. There will usually be a screen inside the facility that shows where you are in line. If you know when you are going to be called, you can take the kids for a little walk around the building to take a break from waiting and get some fresh air. The room itself usually isn’t big enough for a walk. If your kids are a little older, a trip to the bathroom may be enough to break up the waiting time.
The trick is ‘new’ but not ‘unfamiliar.’ The urgent care will be unfamiliar but new games and foods will be the fun type of a new that would be great to introduce while in the unfamiliar. It will help to get their minds off the scary and unfamiliar to be able to engage in something new that is kid friendly and that they like. Kids can be fickle creatures so having rotating games and snacks and toys is a good idea in order to keep them entertained and occupied.