10 signs you need to see a doctor and how to avoid standing in line all day to see one!


Jade Poole from I Write Words


Not sure when to see a doctor? 10 signs you need medical care (like right now) and how to afford it

We get it - going to the doctor ain’t cheap.

>One consult can set you back 500 bucks and that’s not even including the couple of hundred for any prescription medication!

Obviously, these price tags go hand-in-hand with private healthcare and you can always go for the more affordable option - public clinics.

The problem with public clinics and healthcare is that you often have to take an entire day off of work just to wait in line in hopes of seeing a doctor. That means that you might put off seeing one until your symptoms are REALLY bad or until you have some extra cash to afford a private doctor.

How do I afford private healthcare?

Well, I am here to tell you that there is an affordable alternative to medical aid and it’s called health insurance.

From as little as R365 a month you are covered for day-to-day care like doctor and dentist visits and emergency and accident care in private hospitals.

The best part is that my personal favourite health insurer, Oneplan, even pays you BEFORE you see the doctor.

The thing is, by going to the doctor as soon as you know something is wrong, you are helping your own health through early detection and possibly stopping something before it gets worse - don’t wait until it is too late!

Did I mention that Oneplan has an awesome chat feature in their Oneplan App so that you can chat to a team of nurses about any medical questions you might have?

How do I know when I should go to the doctor?

Whether or not you should see a doctor is something many people ask themselves.

And although you might think differently, it’s not just major issues and symptoms that warrant a visit to the doctor, in fact, one of the most common reasons for doctor visits in previous years was because of a cough.

Whatever your symptoms are, remember, this list is by no means the only signs you need to watch out for, the best thing to do is go with your gut and if your instinct is telling you something is wrong, then it might be a good idea to get it checked out.

1. You have a high fever that won’t go down

The normal body temperature shoud be between 36°C and 37°C. Having a high temperature means your body is fighting off infection, but if your temperature is above 39.4˚ Celsius or if it lasts more than 3 days - then you need to see your doctor!

2. Your cold is getting worse (much worse)

You don’t always have to see your when you have a cold, home remedies and a visit to the pharmacy can set you straight.

But you need to see a doctor if you have any of the below symptoms:

●        Severe cough that lasts for more than 2 weeks

●        Fever and muscle ache

●        Difficulty swallowing

●        Shortness of breath

●        Vomiting

3. Unexplained weight loss

If you have lost weight for no reason, then this might be because of depression, diabetes, liver disease or an overactive thyroid. If you have lost more than 10% of your body weight in over 6 months and you have not been dieting, then see your doctor.

4. You feel out of breath

Obesity, high altitude, exercise and even extreme temperature are all normal causes of shortness of breath. But if you are feeling breathless, then you might have asthma or even bronchitis.

5. You experience severe pain in your chest, abdomen or pelvic area

Intense and unexplained pain in these areas might be a sign of an underlying issue.

Chest pain might be a heart attack, pelvic pain could indicate an issue with your appendix and possibly gallstones if you have abdominal pain.

But there are SO many causes to pain in these areas, so it’s best to let your doctor check it out.

6. Your bowel movements or urinating is different

Everyone’s bowel movements are different.

But if you start to notice changes in your stool or notice any blood in your urine or stool, then this could be an issue. Urinating more than usual (and not because you are drinking more liquids) or other bowel problems such as diarrhoea or constipation (and not because you have changed your diet) should be checked by your doctor.

7. Changes in your mood

Having issues concentrating, sleeping or feeling confused are all signs of mental issues and brain functioning disorders. Everyone suffers from these problems, but if you are experiencing them regularly, then you should talk to your doctor about them.

8. Bright flashes of light

If you start to notice bright flashes of light or spots in your vision, then you might be suffering from migraines or eye problems. Get it checked!

The great thing about Oneplan is that they also cover you for visits to the optometrist.

9. You think you have a concussion

If you have hit your head hard then you might be suffering from a headache, have issues concentrating and even have issues with sleeping. These are all signs of a concussion.

10. You are suffering from strange symptoms after a procedure or taking a new medication

If you have recently had surgery, some sort of procedure or have started a new medication and you are starting to experience some strange symptoms you were not warned about, then chat to your doctor about them.

Stay healthy and get checked by your doctor before it’s too late.

Yours in health,

The Health Insurance Team

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