Emergency Care for a Cut or Injury

Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children at Swedish Medical Center

Children commonly get scrapes and bruises so knowing how to determine if a cut or injury needs medical attention can be difficult. Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children at Swedish Medical Center offers this advice:

First, try these steps:

  • Clean the cut with water and apply pressure to stop bleeding. If after 10-15 minutes of pressure, it doesn't stop bleeding, visit the pediatric ER.
  • If the cut is not on your child's face, measure it. Less than 1 mm deep and less than 1 cm long means that emergency care isn't necessary.

If Your Child's Cut is Severe, It May Require Emergency Care

  • See your pediatrician or to to the pediatric ER if the cut is bigger than 1 mm deep and more than 1 cm long. It may require stitches or glue.
  • If you have applied pressure for 10-15 minutes and bleeding has not stopped, go to a pediatric ER. It may be indicative of a larger issue.
  • If the cut is on your child's face, visit the pediatric ER. In most cases of a facial laceration, glue or stitches are necessary to ensure proper healing.
  • Ensure your child is up to date on his/her immunizations. Consult your pediatrician if a tetanus shot is necessary.

Swedish Pediatric Emergency Care