5 Reasons for Thanksgiving Day Urgent Care Visits

When it’s time to celebrate Thanksgiving, you’re probably thinking about turkey, cranberry sauce, and fun with family—not a trip to the provider. However, Thanksgiving’s festivities sometimes lead to health issues that might require urgent medical attention. Unlike many providers’ offices, MD Now Urgent Care centers are open on weekends and holidays between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., allowing patients to seek relief quickly.

While many Thanksgiving injuries and illnesses are minor, some can be life threatening without immediate medical care. Here are five common health issues to watch out for this Thanksgiving:

1.  Knife Injuries

If you’re not careful, all that chopping and dicing can lead to knife injuries. Always remember to hold the knife’s point away from you when cutting foods, and sharpen your knives regularly. When carving the turkey, place the bird on a stable surface to avoid accidental slips. If you do cut yourself, seek medical attention if you cannot stop the bleeding or you experience other symptoms like dizziness, weakness, or numbness.

2.  Food Poisoning

Cooking a turkey properly is essential when it comes to avoiding bacterial infection. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that all turkeys be cooked completely thawed and at 325 degrees Fahrenheit or more. If you are serving stuffing as a side dish, cook it outside of the turkey to avoid food-borne illness. Clean and disinfect all cooking surfaces, and don’t forget to wash your hands after handling raw meat.

Of course, food poisoning still can occur despite taking the necessary precautions while cooking. Symptoms of this condition include vomiting, lethargy, dizziness, and diarrhea. While many cases of food poisoning can be treated at home, professional medical care may be necessary if your symptoms have not subsided after two or three days.

3.  Burns

With constant baking, simmering, and sautéing, Thanksgiving meal preparation can be a recipe for burns. Most often, people are burned when attempting to extinguish a fire that has broken out. Keep a fire extinguisher close by in case a stove or other cooking surface catches fire. It’s also important to use caution when working with hot cookware. Thick oven mitts and potholders can help protect your hands from injury.

A minor burn usually can be treated at home, but you may need to visit an urgent care center if additional symptoms occur. Seek medical help if you notice large blisters, oozing and redness, or if the burn hasn’t healed after several weeks.

4.  Heartburn and Indigestion

Overeating on Thanksgiving can be enjoyable, but for those who suffer from heartburn and indigestion, it can lead to discomfort. Salty, acidic foods often lead to bloating, gas, and even nausea and vomiting. Chewing your food well, incorporating fiber into your meals, and avoiding excessive alcohol consumption may ease these symptoms. However, severe symptoms, like persistent stomach or chest pain, may indicate a serious health issue and should be evaluated quickly.

5.  Overexertion

Adding physical activity to your Thanksgiving festivities can be a good way to keep the holiday pounds at bay. However, those with heart problems or preexisting health conditions should avoid overexerting themselves. Pushing yourself past your limits may also cause sprains, broken bones, or other injuries. Avoid overexertion by taking frequent breaks and drinking plenty of water.