Without treatment, your condition can worsen and your pain can increase. If you suspect your migraine is not normal or you’re in chronic pain, don’t hesitate to make a visit to the doctor to be safe.
When You Should Visit the ER
In some cases, your headache or migraine might be so severe that you need to visit the ER to get relief. If you suspect you’re having a stroke, this is a strong indicator that you should call 911. Signs of a stroke include face drooping on one side, not being able to raise both arms over your head, or slurred or strange-sounding speech. It’s important to get to a doctor within 3 hours of a stroke to ensure a better recovery.
If you hit your head really hard or suffer a head injury, you might have a concussion. In this case, you should also visit the ER as soon as possible. Signs of a concussion outside of a headache include dizziness, drowsiness, balance problems, blurred vision, and feeling sluggish.
Another major sign you should visit the ER because of your headache is if you think you’re having a heatstroke. If you suspect a heat stroke, move to shade or an air-conditioned space and cool down by drinking water, getting into cool water, or putting on wet clothes. Heatstroke symptoms include headache, nausea, dizziness, vomiting, dry skin, red or pale skin, difficulty walking, fast heart rate, fast breathing, and seizures or fainting.
The last reason you should visit the ER due to a severe headache is if you’re pregnant in your third trimester. A severe headache and nausea and vomiting, stomach pain, burning pain in your chest, difficulty breathing, and blurred vision or flashing spots in your vision can indicate preeclampsia which can cause death to both mother and baby.
You should also visit the ER for your headache if it feels so severe that you can’t function. If it feels life-threatening, never hesitate to call 911. If you suffer from frequent migraines though and suffer from other symptoms listed previously, a regular visit to your doctor can help you pinpoint your problem.