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6 Times You Should Call a Doctor or Book an Appointment

One survey found that approximately one in three Americans didn’t call a doctor during the COVID-19 pandemic. While some did this for financial reasons, ignoring major symptoms can lead to bigger expenses later on.

But, how do you know if your symptoms are worth visiting your primary care physician?

In this article, we discuss some of the most common signs that it’s time to schedule an in-person or online consultation with your family doctor. Continue reading to avoid needless suffering and worsening health.

Sudden Or Chronic Pain

People suffering from sudden or chronic pain may incorrectly assume they don’t need to call a doctor. Sudden pain can be a sign of serious injuries such as a sprain or internal injuries, so it shouldn’t be ignored.

While common, it’s also important to understand that chronic pain is not normal, even as you get older. Frequent headaches, joint aches, or earaches should be addressed by a family care physician for relief.

Digestive Problems

Certain digestive problems such as vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and abdominal pain aren’t always a one-time problem. When digestive problems are ongoing, they can be a sign of other medical issues or cause them.

Recurring vomiting and diarrhea can lead to dehydration, especially in children and older adults. Nausea and abdominal pain can be caused by intestinal obstructions, which requires that you visit a doctor.


A fever of 103ºF is concerning for adults, but slightly lower temperatures are alarming for children and infants. Keeping track of your normal temperature can help you decide when to call a doctor.

If your fever is accompanied by chills, headaches, body aches, or other symptoms, you should schedule an online consultation. Teladoc health benefits include 24/7/365 availability.

Abnormal Physical Changes

Abnormal physical changes such as swelling and new lumps are a sign that it’s time to visit a doctor. Even abnormal physical changes that occur gradually, such as with growths or rashes, should be examined.

These issues can occur as a result of an allergic reaction, an injury, or an unknown illness. Some of the major symptoms lead to cancer, which is why you should see a primary care physician sooner rather than later.

Struggles With Mental Health

Your mental health is as important as your physical health and symptoms of illness shouldn’t be ignored. Not only do regular visits to your family doctor help normalize mental health struggles but they can also give you relief.

Some common symptoms include lack of energy, mood swings, social withdrawal, changes in sleeping habits, negative thoughts, and more. Your primary care physician can help decide which treatment is best for you.

Worsening Or Unchanging Symptoms

Minor issues such as a mild headache or soreness after exercise can often be managed at home. However, whether you have minor or major symptoms, you should call a doctor if they’re getting worse.

Even if they’re not getting worse, you should also visit a doctor if they’re not getting better. Getting to your family doctor early can help prevent the problem from becoming more serious.

Call a Doctor to Get Better

Don’t wait to call a doctor if you think you might have an injury or illness. You might think you can tell the difference between minor and major symptoms, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

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