Chances are you won’t visit the doctor because of a bruise on your arm, but where do you set the line? If you are experiencing any of the following supposedly mild symptoms, visiting your physician can ultimately save your life.
When it comes to seeking medical help, there are all kinds of people. Some are hypochondriacs who will rush to the emergency room if they have the hiccups whilst others are too proud to look for medical attention even with a bone sticking out of their arms. Finding a good balance is difficult, and if you’re not a doctor yourself, it is tough to know what symptoms warrant treatment. If, however, you find yourself experiencing the following types of pain, you should likely visit your physician as soon as possible.
Severe Head Pain
If you are experiencing the worst head pain of your life (i.e. it makes the morning after that one night in Vegas feel like a trip to the spa) then chances are it’s just a migraine. If, however, the pain is not accompanied by other migraine like symptoms such as nausea or sensitivity to light and sound, then it could be an aneurysm.
Aneurysms, which can occur in about 1 in 20 people, are capable of cutting off oxygen to your brain and consequently death. They also tend to cause permanent brain damage within minutes, so getting to the hospital fast is critical.
Extremely Painful Tooth
If eating anything cold is suddenly the most painful experience of your life, it may mean that the underlying nerve in one of your teeth has been damaged or compromised. Often times this happens because the tooth is cracked, which means that bacteria can infect the cavity and spread throughout the rest of your body. This can usually be fixed with a filling, but depending on the extent of the damage, it may require a root canal. Whilst that may sound painful, the alternative is significantly worse.
Intensifying Pain in your Side
You may initially mistake it for a cramp or bloating, but if the pain is extreme and only getting worse then it may be appendicitis. Generally, appendicitis is accompanied by a fever and nausea. If that sounds about right, emergency surgery is required before the appendix bursts. Get to your doctor right away. They will be able to tell whether your appendix is inflamed or you just have the worst gas of your life.
This symptom is perhaps the trickiest, because it tends to come and go randomly. It may feel like indigestion or heartburn, but if it repeatedly presents itself with no discernable trigger, then you may be suffering from a heart attack. The symptoms are often more mild in women than in men, which means that women are far more likely to mistake it for something else.
If you’re concerned, rush to the hospital for an EKG. You’ll learn if your heart has been damaged, and the extent of any such damage. From there, you’ll have a variety of options that your physician will be able to advise you on.