Author: Premier Urgent Care Chicago

What Causes Fatigue And When To See Premier Urgent Care

Do you ever wake up in the morning and just want to dive back into bed? This happens to us all occasionally, but when fatigue prevents us from being productive, something else may be at work. Don’t ignore chronic fatigue. If you’re tired of feeling tired, let’s look at what causes fatigue and when to see Premier Urgent Care.

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Just A Cold, Seasonal Allergies, Or COVID-19?

During this time of year it can be difficult to distinguish between having just a cold or seasonal allergies. With the fears of COVID-19, this dilemma becomes even more important, and can be quite frightening with the wrong information. Let’s unpack the symptoms of just a cold, seasonal allergies or COVID-19, and when to be concerned.

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Five Tips for Keeping Your Ears Warm This Winter (and Why It Matters)

Keeping Your Ears Warm This WinterRemember when Mom would chase after you, insisting you put on your hat and scarf before you headed out into the frigid weather? Remember how you would protest, and maybe even leave that hat and scarf behind?

Turns out, Mom was right.

Our bodies lose copious amounts of heat from our heads, which can affect core body temperature, but that’s not the whole story. Failing to keep your ears protected from cold weather can contribute to, or even cause, hearing loss.

Ears, like your nose, are comprised mostly of cartilage, so there is no insulation (fat) to keep them warm when the temperatures drop. You probably figured that out when you were last in the cold: your nose and ears are usually the first body parts to feel the chill.

RELATED ARTICLE: 6 Tips for Staying Healthy This Holiday Season

Our hands and feet are also susceptible to conditions such as frostbite, but that is usually avoided by wearing gloves, socks, and shoes.

In fact, once the temperature hits 59°F, you need to make sure your ears are protected. In many parts of the country, 59°F is hardly bundle-up weather. But at this temperature, your hypothalamus (a small portion of the brain that is responsible for multiple body functions, including temperature control) begins to conserve heat for your internal organs, moving blood away from your extremities (that means your ears).

Why It’s Important to Keep Your Ears Warm in the Winter

Cold ears are annoying, to be sure, but unprotected ears in cold weather can actually be dangerous. When your ears are exposed to cold, bone spurs, also called exostosis, can result. This happens when excess bone grows in the ear canal to protect the ear. This condition is sometimes called surfer’s ear, since surfers who frequent cold water wear wetsuits, but they do not usually protect their ears.

Excess bone growth can be incredibly painful. When that bone growth occurs in the ear canal, it can lead to a host of other problems. Water, dirt, and bacteria can become trapped in the ear and lead to recurring ear infections. The only treatment for exostosis is surgery.

How Can You Keep Your Ears Protected From the Cold?

  • Wear a hat with snug-fitting ear flaps. If wearing a hat is problematic, invest in quality earmuffs.
  • Fleece headbands that cover the ears can be worn under a warm hat or beanie for extra protection.
  • Commercial ear plugs are helpful, but custom-fitting ear plugs, made by a hearing specialist, can provide better protection.
  • If you are just out in the cold for a short time, you can pull your scarf up over your ears or tighten the hood of your jacket. Both of these short-term fixes will help protect your ears from the wind and cold.

For more information on how to protect your ears this winter, contact Premier Urgent Care at (773) 891-2890.

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Learn why patients have come to trust Premier Urgent Care.

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Call (773) 891-2890.
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6 Tips for Staying Healthy This Holiday Season

tips for staying healthy this holidayThe holiday season is here, and while it’s the most wonderful time of the year, it’s also one of the most stressful. Schedules are full, it’s cold and flu season, and everyone is trying to accomplish a lot in a short period of time.

All the bustle and stress of the holiday season can easily cause some people to overlook disease prevention, and cutting corners during daily tasks and chores can easily lead to the spread of infectious diseases and put a damper on your holiday celebrations. The following tips can help you and your loved one stay healthy this holiday season.

Stay Dry

Winter weather means lots of snow and ice. Staying dry is one of the best ways to prevent illness. When the temperature drops and it’s snowing outside, wear a heavy coat, gloves, a hat, and waterproof shoes or boots. While it’s a myth that being cold causes a cold, staying outside when you’re cold and wet taxes your body and can lead to poor immune system function.

RELATED ARTICLE: How to Tell If You Have the Flu

Wash Your Hands Frequently

Germs and disease-causing bacteria thrive on dirty surfaces and spread easily. Make sure to wash your hands before and after all meals and after personal contact with others. Use warm running water and soap, washing for at least 20 full seconds. Be sure to keep your fingernails trimmed to reasonable lengths and clean under them as well every time you wash.

RELATED ARTICLE: The Best Hand Washing Techniques

Check Your Vaccination Schedule

Make sure you and your family are up to date on your vaccinations. Try to get them out of the way before the winter weather starts if possible, and pay close attention for any signs of adverse reactions.

Avoid Overindulgence

The holiday season is a great time to enjoy home cooked meals with friends and family, but be careful not to overdo it. Eating too much is taxing on the body and can cause an upset stomach and other gastrointestinal issues. Foods with high levels of sugar can trigger inflammation and other issues.

Ensure All Food Is Cooked Properly

When serving holiday meals, use instant-read meat thermometers to ensure all prepared meats are cooked to appropriate temperatures. Undercooked meat can carry diseases like salmonella and may lead to serious illness.

Get Adequate Rest

You might be very busy over the holidays, but you shouldn’t neglect sleep. Aim for at least six to eight hours of sleep each night and adjust your schedule accordingly. Burning yourself out and tackling your holiday errands without adequate rest is not only stressful for your body, but also leaves you more vulnerable to illness and more prone to accidental injuries.

Come to Premier Urgent Care for Fast, Efficient Treatment

When these health issues do arise, Premier Urgent Care in Chicago can provide safe and timely treatment. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us for immediate care.

Better Providers. Better Care.

Learn why patients have come to trust Premier Urgent Care.

No appointment needed.

Call (773) 891-2890.

Insurance accepted.

Halloween Safety Tips for 2019

Halloween Safety Tips Halloween is a time for tricks and treats, spooks and ghouls, and all the fun Halloween events that occur around the Chicago area every October. It’s a festive time of year that kids love, but it does come with some risks. Ensuring your family stays safe can be a significant task in this day and age. Below are a few Halloween safety tips to prevent injury and keep safe.

Prevent Auto-Pedestrian Accidents

Did you know?… 

Pedestrians are more than twice as likely to be struck by a car and killed on Halloween as on any other day of the year. Be sure to:

  • Cross correctly. Always cross intersections at designated crosswalks and be sure to obey the traffic signals. Always look left, look right, and look left again to ensure you are not crossing in front of unwary motorists – and teach your kids, to do so, too.
  • Always use the sidewalk. Even if a street seems deserted, the sidewalk is a much safer place to walk. If there are no sidewalks available, keep as far to the left as possible, facing traffic. 
  • Keep visible. Costumes that are dark in color are especially difficult to see at night. Add reflective tape or wear bright colors to ensure motorists can see you or your children.

Keep Costumes Safe 

Even if costumes are light colored enough to remain visible at night, they may pose other risks. Make sure costumes:

  • Are flame retardant. Commercially sold costumes should be labeled flame retardant, including masks, wigs, clothing, and accessories.
  • Allow full vision. Certain masks can obstruct vision and cause hazardous walking conditions. Ensure all masks, headpieces, and wigs stay out of the wearer’s eyes.
  • Are nontoxic. All makeup and other accessories, including masks and fake blood, should be labeled nontoxic. Test makeup on a small area of skin first and be sure to remove it before bedtime.
  • Look safe. Fake guns and knives may seem fun, but be careful when brandishing these outside or with people who may not know they are fake.          

Keep Safe from Others

Chicago streets are full on Halloween. Special consideration for child safety is often necessary as a result. Make sure you:

  • Walk with young children. A responsible adult should accompany younger children while trick or treating or attending Halloween festivities.
  • Plan with older children. Set an acceptable route, expected time home, and warn children against entering the home or car of a stranger.
  • Stay together, stay alert. No matter who’s trick or treating, travel only in well-lit areas, and stick with a group of friends.
  • Save treats for home. Encourage children to hold off on eating their Halloween treats until they’re home; toss any unwrapped candies or treats.

We at Premier Urgent Care wish you a Happy and safe Halloween. 

Our board-certified staff provides quick, convenient urgent care services to keep the whole family healthy. Please visit us at our Southside Chicago location whenever you are in need of urgent care services.

Better Providers. Better Care.

Learn why patients have come to trust Premier Urgent Care. Visit

No appointment needed.
Call (773) 891-2890.
Insurance accepted.

Fall Sport Safety Tips

Fall Sport Safety TipsThe back-to-school shuffle is finally here, and parents and their children alike are busy adjusting to new schedules. After-school fall sports are in full swing, which may make kids more likely to sustain injuries. Though coaches and teachers have the best intentions when it comes to keeping your children safe, there are things that you, as a parent, can do to maximize their safety all season long. Here’s how you can keep your child healthy on and off the field this fall.

Keep Them Hydrated

Dehydration can set in earlier in children than it does for healthy adults – the younger the child, the quicker dehydration can occur. During the cooler fall months, kids will also be less likely to rehydrate, as their perception of effort may be less at lower temperatures. Send them to school with a water bottle and encourage them to refill frequently during the day and at practices. At dinner and other meals at home, offer water – not juices or pop.

RELATED ARTICLE: Signs of Dehydration in Children

Check Their Equipment

Sports equipment, particularly used school gear, can fall into disrepair and do its job less effectively. For contact sports such as football and soccer, snug fitting protective equipment can help protect against serious injury or concussion. If school equipment does not seem to be well-maintained, consider purchasing your own for the season or encouraging the school to buy more for the team. Always be on the lookout for signs of disorientation, confusion, dizziness, or nausea or vomiting, which could be indicative of a concussion.

Avoid Overexertion in the Heat

Though it is still September, the Chicago area is known for having temps well into the 80s throughout the month. When kids are pushing themselves physically, heat-related illnesses can occur. Heat exhaustion, heat cramps, and even a heat stroke pose a threat to children and teens, particularly those who push themselves and don’t know when to take a break. Football players are particularly vulnerable to heat-related illnesses due the equipment they wear – studies show they are over 11 times more likely to suffer a heat- related illness than any other sport combined.

RELATED ARTICLE: Heat Exhaustion vs. Heat Stroke: Do You Know the Difference?

Communicate With Your Kids about Safety

Talk to your kids about knowing their limits and taking rests throughout practice, especially during the heat. Make sure your child’s coaches are on board and that they know safety trumps any need to develop toughness or “grit.” When a child does come home from a hot practice, make sure they drink plenty of fluids, including water and sports drinks to replace electrolytes.

We at Premier Urgent care hope you have a safe and fun fall sports season! If you do need help, our providers are available for immediate care.

Contact Premier Urgent Care Chicago

Premier Urgent Care Center provides high-quality healthcare throughout the Chicago area, with urgent care services that are quick, convenient, and compassionate. We have a staff of highly trained and board certified physicians and physician assistants who can address the immediate healthcare needs of your whole family.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us for immediate care. 

Better Providers. Better Care.

Learn why patients have come to trust Premier Urgent Care. Visit

No appointment needed.
Call (773) 891-2890.
Insurance accepted.

Insect Sting: When It’s Time to Seek Treatment

Insect Sting - spider on webInsect bites and stings are never pleasant, but some stings can cause more severe reactions than others. Some insects are venomous and can cause serious medical issues without treatment. People with allergies to certain types of insects face severe risks from an insect sting. Most stinging insects are most active in the late summer and early fall during the height of their breeding seasons.

As the summer ends, now is the perfect time to learn the signs that an insect sting or bite requires medical attention.

Scratching Can Lead to Infection

Some insect bites, such as mosquito bites, may not cause any severe effects on their own. Most people contend with skin discomfort and itchiness after suffering insect bites. However, excessive scratching can potentially open the skin and cause a secondary infection. If you have been incessantly scratching an insect bite and notice persistent warmth in the affected area, severe redness, the development of an abscess, or a fever, see a doctor as soon as possible.

RELATED ARTICLE: Walk-In Clinic or ER: The Basics for When to Go Where

Embedded Ticks

Everyone dreads discovering ticks on their clothes or skin after a walk in the woods. When you notice a tick on yourself, remove it as soon as possible by using a pair of metal tweezers to firmly grasp the head of the insect and pull it out. Avoid crushing the tick’s body, which can transmit diseases like Lyme disease into the open bite wound. If you cannot remove a tick completely or cannot reach it, a medical professional can help. If you develop flu-like symptoms after suffering a tick bite, seek medical care immediately.

People with Allergies Face Significant Risks

Many people with allergies may not only contend with hay fever symptoms and sensitivity to tree and grass pollen but also insect bites. Some signs of an allergic reaction include:

  • Itching and swelling in the affected area.
  • The appearance of hives on the skin.
  • Chest tightness and shortness of breath.

Some people with severe allergies may experience anaphylaxis, a potentially fatal allergic reaction. This may entail a sharp drop in blood pressure or even a loss of consciousness. These individuals should consult their doctors about preventative measures, such as immunotherapy or carrying an EpiPen when they go outdoors.

Some Insect Stings Can Be Deadly

Allergies aside, some insects pose significant risks due to their very nature. A few of the insects that could prompt immediate medical attention after stinging or biting include:

  • Africanized honeybees, or “killer bees,” which defend their hives aggressively and sting more than regular honeybees in response to threats.
  • Brown recluse spiders. Their venom can cause necrosis of the skin, leading to infection and permanent scarring without immediate medical attention.
  • Black widow spiders. With venom 15 times more powerful than rattlesnake venom, a bite from a black widow can send the victim into shock. These bites require immediate medical intervention, especially if the victim is a child.

If you or a loved one suffers a sting or bite from these creatures, experiences an acute allergic reaction, or develops an infection after suffering an insect bite, seek medical treatment immediately. Premier Urgent Care can offer top-notch medical treatment for unexpected insect bites.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us for immediate care.

Better Providers. Better Care.

Learn why patients have come to trust Premier Urgent Care. Visit

No appointment needed.
Call (773) 891-2890.
Insurance accepted.

Signs of Dehydration in Children

Signs of Dehydration in ChildrenHours of outdoor playtime and illness are common causes of dehydration in children. Dehydration is a condition that occurs when the body loses more water than it takes in. In severe cases of dehydration, there is not enough water to carry out normal body functions, such as temperature regulation and maintaining a normal heart rate.

Bottom line…

Anyone can experience bouts of dehydration, but some groups, like babies and young children, are particularly vulnerable.

What Causes Dehydration?

When children lose fluids without adequate replacement, dehydration can result. The most common cause of dehydration in children is vomiting and diarrhea. Since babies and young children carry lower volumes of water in their bodies, they are particularly susceptible. Other activities, such as vigorous outdoor activity, can contribute to the onset of dehydration.

RELATED ARTICLE: How to Tell If You Have the Flu

What Are the Symptoms?

It can be difficult to assess dehydration in its earliest stages, especially since it can mimic other signs of illness. Mild dehydration can have several signs. Dehydration may be a possibility if your child:

  • Complains of thirst or lightheadedness
  • Has a dry mouth
  • Is more tired than usual
  • Urinates less frequently, and urine is dark or strong-smelling

Babies and younger children may not be able to communicate their symptoms to their parents. Keep an eye out for the following symptoms:

  • A sunken spot (fontanelle) on the top of the head
  • No or few tears with crying
  • Fewer wet diapers
  • Lethargy

Can You Prevent Dehydration? 

Mild cases of dehydration are common following illnesses. When a child does not feel well enough to eat or drink, even small amounts of fluid loss can lead to dehydration. When your child is not feeling well, you can encourage them to take small sips of clear liquid such as water. Though giving your child juice regularly is not recommended, providing diluted apple juice during periods of illness may be appropriate. If your child is resisting liquids, try making it novel by offering through silly straws or a special cup.

When dehydration is moderate or severe, electrolyte replacement through specially-formulated pediatric drinks may be indicated. Your Premier Urgent Care provider will tell you if you need to supplement with drinks such as Pedialyte.

With conservative measures, mild and moderate dehydration should resolve on its own with the reintroduction of fluids. In more severe cases, intravenous fluids may be necessary. Seek medical attention immediately if:

  • Your baby or child is lethargic
  • Your baby is less than 3 months old and has a fever
  • Your baby goes more than 6 hours without a wet diaper
  • Your baby’s fontanelle appears sunken
  • Your child has dry or stick mucous membranes (inside of mouth, corners of eyes)

Dehydration is a common condition and can be scary for parents. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us for immediate care.

Better Providers. Better Care.

Learn why patients have come to trust Premier Urgent Care. Visit

No appointment needed.
Call (773) 891-2890.
Insurance accepted.

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