Headaches: When Should You Worry?
Everyone has headaches, but they are typically viewed like bad weather or taxes – a minor nuisance that you just have to put up with. Most headaches are not serious. However, if your headache is unusual or severe, maybe it’s best to go to your local Bryan emergency room. It could be a sign of a potentially life-threatening condition.
Learn more about when to worry about a headache. Read on.
1. Persistent headaches
A persistent headache doesn’t automatically mean that you have a serious condition. Go to your doctor if your headache lasts for more than a week, especially if it’s causing you trouble functioning in your daily life.
2. Changes in mental function or personality
If you or someone you know has a severe headache accompanied by weakness, loss of coordination, confusion, or trouble speaking and walking, get emergency medical help. You could be experiencing some stroke warning signs. A stroke that is left untreated might cause irreversible brain damage.
3. Headache after a blow to the head
Any head injury warrants an evaluation by a medical professional – regardless of how minor it is. You might have suffered from a concussion, and tests may need to be done to identify the severity.
Concussion symptoms include dizziness, trouble concentrating, headache, loss of consciousness, confusion, and nausea. If you suspect that you have suffered from a concussion, have someone take you to the emergency room.
4. Headache with stiff neck and a fever
If you have severe headache along with stiff neck and a fever, you could be suffering from meningitis. Meningitis is an inflammation to the spinal cord membranes and the brain. Symptoms could include vomiting, pain, a rash, and drowsiness. Get medical help right away. Some forms of meningitis can lead to death or long-term disability.
5. Headache with vomiting
People sometimes experience nausea and vomiting when they have a bad headache. Migraines are normally associated with symptoms like dizziness and vision disturbances that can lead to vomiting. These symptoms are not life threatening, but they surely are unpleasant.
It’s best to have yourself checked if you experience frequent vomiting for more than 24 hours. Dehydration can cause serious complications.
When to worry
If your headache keeps coming back, goes on for a long time, or interferes with your daily routines, have yourself checked by a doctor for help with pain management. If you or a loved one experiences severe headache with loss of consciousness or confusion, go to your nearest Bryan emergency room right away. You could be experiencing a medical emergency.