Deciding which symptoms require an emergency visit to the hospital and which ones do not can be rather tricky. Among adults, various forms of chest pain necessitate a visit to the ER. Basic chest pain can often wait for a regular visit to the doctor or urgent care, but shortness of breath, burning sensations, or heavy pressure on the chest may indicate that there is something seriously wrong. Adults who experience any combination of these symptoms should go to the ER immediately. Similarly, any difficulty breathing among children, particularly those who are younger than four years, may point to an asthma attack or pneumonia. Both of these conditions may cause dangerous complications in young children.
One of the most common reasons why adults and children visit the emergency room is injury. Serious injuries such as deep cuts likely require a visit to the emergency room, as do broken bones. Moreover, individuals should visit the ER if they experience symptoms such as sudden confusion, dizziness, and severe headaches. Fevers in children may also be serious, but in adults they can usually wait until the next day unless they come with vomiting or a rash. If adults experience any conditions that may make driving difficult, for instance, dizziness or heavy bleeding, they should call 911 instead of driving themselves to the hospital.