The Top 5 Injuries and Illnesses We See Every Summer

July 18, 2022 Providence Express Care


 In this article:

  • Summer brings fun, sunshine – and some common injuries and illnesses.

  • Providence ExpressCare is here for you all summer long to treat a wide variety of conditions.

  • We make getting the care you need easy and convenient.

There are so many fun things to do in the summer, the last thing you’re thinking about is getting hurt or sick. But despite the best-laid plans, there are certain injuries and illnesses that we always see more of in the summertime. 

The good news is that when you need non-emergency medical care quickly, you can access Providence ExpressCare from home, on the road, or in one of our local clinics. We accept most insurance and have extended evening and weekend hours so you can get the care you need when you need it.

We treat many conditions at Providence ExpressCare – some of which you may have gone to your primary care doctor or an emergency room for in the past. Let’s look at the top conditions we treat in the summer and when to seek Providence ExpressCare treatment for each.

Cuts and Scrapes

Summertime is full of activity and adventure, from vacations and days at the pool to hikes, bike rides, and more. Minor injuries like cuts and scrapes are common during the summer months, but how do you know if you have a wound that needs medical attention? Even minor scratches can cause bleeding that seems excessive in the moment, and that can make you unsure about how to take care of them.

Come to Providence ExpressCare for a cut if:

  • You have a minor cut that you can’t treat yourself.
  • The injury is from a rusty or dirty object.
  • You were bitten by a human or animal.

Depending on the size of your cut, your Express Care provider may recommend stitches. Smaller, shallow wounds can be closed using Steri-Strips, and sterile adhesive strips. Staples are another alternative to stitches, especially for head wounds.

Go to the emergency room or call 911 if:

  • The cut is spurting blood.
  • A foreign object is stuck in your wound.
  • The injury is from a bullet.
  • Your cut is on the face, eyelids, or genitals.
  • Your cut interferes with joint mobility.
  • You are experiencing numbness or loss of sensation.
  • You have secondary injuries like broken bones or head injuries.

Seek immediate medical attention if you have a cut on a cosmetically significant area or near your groin area. Cuts on parts of your face that could interfere with functions like your sight need to be evaluated by a doctor, too.


Grilling out and making s’mores around a campfire are classic summertime activities. There’s no doubt that both are fun, but safety needs to be a top priority whenever there is an open flame. 

How to identify burns

Not all burns are created equal. There are three degrees of burns, and each requires different care. So knowing how to identify burns will help you understand what to do if someone gets burned.

  • First-degree burns: Like mild sunburns, first-degree burns are red, painful, dry, and do not have blisters. They take about seven to 10 days to heal.
  • Second-degree burns: A second-degree burn extends beyond the top layer of your skin and causes blisters that may become infected if they pop. Second-degree burns may take between two to three weeks to heal.
  • Third-degree burns: The symptoms of third-degree burns vary. They may be waxy and white or dark brown, and they may char. Third-degree burns cause raised, leathery skin and undeveloped blisters. There is no set timeline for healing, and third-degree burns frequently result in scarring.

Come to Providence ExpressCare for a burn if: 

You have a minor, second-degree burn that blisters, such as painful sunburns and burns from flames or a hot pan.

Go to the emergency room or call 911 if: 

You have severe burns to the hands, face, eyes, ears, feet, or groin area.

Skin Irritations, Bug Bites, and Rashes

A hike in the woods is a great way to lift your spirit. But what happens when you run into biting bugs and poisonous plants? Usually, the irritation they cause is minimal, but if the irritation becomes a problem, you can come to Providence ExpressCare for treatment.

Bug Bites and Stings

Bites and stings from mosquitos, ants, fleas, and bees are usually harmless. They may itch, swell or cause mild pain.

Poisonous Plants

Even if you are not allergic to the oil in poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac, you might still get a red, itchy rash if you come into contact with these plants. Their oil can stick to your skin, shoes, or clothing and easily spread to other areas. If this happens, a rash will develop within a few days and may last several weeks, requiring a prescription for a topical steroid.

Come to Providence ExpressCare for skin irritations and rashes if:

You have a rash, bite, or sting that worsens or makes it hard to relax, sleep or perform daily activities. Most rashes only last a few days, but if yours lasts longer or you develop a fever, we can help.

Go to the emergency room or call 911 if:

You develop signs of a serious allergic reaction, such as vomiting, trouble breathing, difficulty swallowing, or severe swelling.


More hours of sunlight might be one of the greatest things about summer. The vitamin D we get from the sun supports our mental health, physical performance, and our immune system. So getting out in the sun is a good thing, as long as you take the right steps to protect your skin. 

Sunburn is painful and can have long-lasting adverse effects on your health. It accelerates skin aging, the leading cause of basal and squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma, the most deadly type of skin cancer.

If your sunburn blisters, this means you have a second-degree sunburn. Let the blisters heal — do not pop them as that may lead to an infection.

Come to Providence ExpressCare for sunburn if:

Your blisters become infected.

Swimmer’s Ear

Swimmer’s ear (also called external otitis) is the inflammation of the external ear canal. It can be caused by allergies, dermatological disease, or infection, including infection caused by water trapped in the outer ear canal. People of any age can get swimmer’s ear, but it occurs in children more often than adults. It is not the same as a middle ear infection, and it is not contagious.

Come to Providence ExpressCare for swimmer’s ear if:

  • You feel pain when the outer ear is bumped or tugged.
  • Your ear itches.
  • Your ear has drainage.
  • Your ear is red or swollen.

If you have any of these symptoms, we can examine you and prescribe antibiotic ear drops to treat your swimmer's ear. 

We’re Here All Summer, Every Day

Providence ExpressCare is available seven days a week with evening hours. We offer in-person, same-day care in convenient neighborhood locations and affordable virtual care appointments for common conditions. Book an appointment today and bookmark this page so you can find us if a summertime injury or illness finds you.


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About Providence ExpressCare

Providence ExpressCare provides quick, affordable, easy access to quality healthcare 7 days a week! We accept most insurance plans including HMO and PPO plans.  Providence ExpressCare - All Better Now Book an appointment today at ExpressCare. 

This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your health care professional's instructions.


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