Sometimes, you may have a health problem that needs immediate medical attention. But how do you know if it’s serious enough to go to the emergency room (ER)? Here are some signs and symptoms that indicate you should go to the local ER or call 911 right away:
- Trouble breathing, wheezing, or shortness of breath. It could be a sign of a severe asthma attack, an allergic reaction, a lung infection, or heart problems.
- Chest pain, pressure, or tightness. It could be a sign of a heart attack, especially if accompanied by sweating, nausea, vomiting, or pain in the arm or jaw.
- Severe bleeding that won’t stop. It could be a sign of a serious injury or a bleeding disorder.
- Severe pain anywhere in the body. It could be caused by appendicitis, kidney stones, gallstones, ectopic pregnancy, or other conditions that may require surgery.
- Severe vomiting or diarrhea that won’t stop. It could indicate dehydration, food poisoning, or intestinal obstruction.
- Poisoning or overdose of drugs or alcohol.
- Seizures that last more than one minute or from which you don’t wake up quickly.
These are not the only reasons to go to the local ER. If you’re unsure whether your situation is an emergency, it is better to be safe than sorry and seek medical care as soon as possible. The ER staff will evaluate your condition and provide appropriate treatment.