How to Know if Your Cut Needs Stitches at Getwell Urgent Care

Woman holding bandaged-up hand

No matter how careful you are, accidents still happen.

If you have inadvertently sliced your finger open with a knife while making dinner, or stepped on a piece of glass, you may be in a quandary. Is your cut is serious enough to warrant a trip to Getwell Urgent Care so that doctors can stitch you up? Or if you slap a bandage on it, will it heal on its own?

Don’t fret — just read on to learn whether or not you should seek treatment for your cut.

When to Visit Getwell Urgent Care

There are some pretty clear-cut signs that you need stitches, but in other cases, it can be hard to tell. If the wound is shallow, if its edges stay together when you move, and if the bleeding stops relatively quickly, you can probably skip the trip to Getwell Urgent Care.

Here are some signs that stitches are necessary.

1. The Cut Is Deep

How deep is too deep? The general guideline is about a quarter of an inch. If you can see your muscles or bones, you need stitches. They are also necessary when yellow subcutaneous fatty tissue is visible.

2. There Is Risk of Infection

What was it that cut you? A chef’s knife that you’re using to chop veggies probably doesn’t pose much risk of infection. Any implement or item that is rusty or dirty, on the other hand, may have left behind bacteria that will be more difficult for your body to deal with. You should get those cuts checked out.

Stitches will also prevent infection from occurring as the wound heals. It can be tricky to keep a bad cut covered properly.

3. The Affected Area Is On a Joint

Maybe you took a tumble, or knelt down on a sharp rock or stray nail. If the cut is on your knee joint, or any other joint, your best bet is to get it stitched up. This is a particularly smart idea if the wound opens up more when you bend or move the joint.

4. The Cut Is On Your Face

Cuts to the face, even if they aren’t very deep, usually will warrant stitches for cosmetic reasons. It can also be hard to bandage your face, so visit Getwell Urgent Care and see what the doctor says.

5. It Bleeds for a Long Time

Most cuts will bleed to some extent. Apply pressure to the area and if possible, elevate the part of the body in question. If the bleeding has not stopped after 15 minutes, it’s time to head to urgent care for stitches.

Getwell Urgent Care Can Help

Still on the fence? Error on the safe side by getting checked out at Getwell Urgent Care. If it turns out that you don’t need stitches, at least you’ll have put your mind at ease.

Urgent care is also a great option for infections, simple fractures, minor burns, and other issues that aren’t life-threatening. Check out the services we provide for more information.