Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center
Southern Hills Hospital & Medical Center is committed to providing the highest quality of care while serving the communities of southwest Las Vegas.
702.916.5000

Should you go to the ER for a migraine?

Headaches are among the most common reason people seek emergency care, and migraines are to blame for many of those ER visits. How do you know if you should go to the emergency room when you experience a migraine? Here are some of the signs that you should consider getting emergency care for a migraine.

You are having the worst headache you’ve ever experienced.

Whether you are accustomed to having migraines but are having a headache that is more intense than normal or you’ve never had a migraine before, a sudden and severe headache should be evaluated in the ER to determine the cause.

For some people, this kind of headache could be the first time they have a migraine, and so the symptoms are a new experience. However, in some cases, a crippling headache can be the sign of another condition, such as a stroke or brain aneurysm, that could be life-threatening in the absence of immediate treatment.

You’ve tried home remedies that haven’t worked.

Most people who get migraines have a home care strategy they use when a headache begins. This plan could include the use of medications to treat the pain and nausea as well as getting away from bright lights and loud noises and applying a cool cloth to the forehead.

If you’ve tried these remedies, but you are not getting relief, it could be time to get emergency care. This is especially true if the migraine lasts over multiple days.

You’re experiencing signs of dehydration

Not only can dehydration contribute to migraines, but when you have a migraine, you can become even more dehydrated, particularly if you vomit. It can also be difficult to drink fluids when your migraine is severe. If you believe you could be dehydrated, you may need IV fluids.

Whenever you’re experiencing symptoms that concern you, don’t take the chance of delaying emergency care. Southern Hills Hospital and Medical Center’s ER is open 24 hours a day to provide the emergency care in Las Vegas when you need it most. For more information about our hospital and all of our services, please call (702) 916-5023.


Make swimming safe for the whole family

Swimming and water sports are popular ways to beat the heat during the hot Las Vegas summers. If your family has a pool or you’re thinking of using a community pool, there are a few safety precautions you need to know about. Near drownings are, unfortunately, entirely too common. Many of the drowning accidents that claim the lives of children happen in backyard pools. When life-threatening events occur, families can trust the emergency care team at Southern Hills Hospital.

Supervise children near water

Parents of young children already know that accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. The most effective way to protect your kids around bodies of water is to ensure that they are supervised every second by a responsible adult. If your child is having a pool party with friends, there should be at least a couple of adults keeping an eye on the kids.

Learn CPR

CPR saves lives, but many people don’t know how to perform it. Consider checking your local hospital or community center for CPR classes. New parents can often find infant and pediatric CPR classes in maternity hospitals.

If you do need to perform CPR because of a drowning accident, continue to do rescue breaths and chest compressions until breathing resumes or emergency responders arrive.

Enroll children in swimming lessons

Formal swimming lessons aren’t a foolproof way to prevent drowning. Children still need to be supervised around bodies of water. However, formal swimming lessons can certainly help reduce the risk of an accident.

Consider talking to your children’s pediatrician about how old they should be when they start swimming lessons.

Teach children about poolside safety

Children need frequent reminders to follow poolside rules. Give your kids a refresher course before opening your pool at the start of the season. Here are some basic pool rules:

  • Only go near the water with an adult present.
  • No running or roughhousing near the pool.
  • No playing near drains or suction outlets.

The emergency care team at Southern Hills Hospital is available 24/7, although we truly hope your family will never need to see us. Our community hospital is committed to healthcare excellence across all of our departments, which include maternity, stroke care and orthopedics. Call a registered nurse in Las Vegas at (702) 916-5000.


What is the connection between your mental and physical health?

Good health is about more than just the absence of disease. It’s about enjoying quality of life, and reaping the benefits of a strong mind and body. Each May is Mental Health Month, and the geriatric psychiatric specialists at Southern Hills Hospital are celebrating by spreading the word about the mind/body connection. If you’re experiencing mental health challenges, consider visiting our hospital to meet with a caring specialist.

The physical effects of stress on your body

Severe or chronic stress takes a heavy toll on both mind and body. Stress can manifest in vague aches and pains. It can also result in the following:

  • Excessive fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Chest pain
  • Heart palpitations
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Lightheadedness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Insomnia
  • Changes in appetite

Stress can even cause a spike in blood pressure.

The behavioral effects of emotions

If you’re having trouble coping with difficult emotions, you might notice that your daily routine is a little off. You might skip breakfast—or you might eat ice cream for breakfast. You might lose the motivation to exercise.

On the other hand, if you’re feeling mentally strong and emotionally healthy, you might decide to join a gym or indulge in a delicious salad. The state of your mental health can influence your physical health by altering your typical behaviors.

The methods of supporting mental resiliency

Mental resiliency and physical health are both essential for good quality of life. If you’ve been struggling with signs of mental health disorders like depression or anxiety, consider talking to your doctor about it. Your doctor genuinely wants to help you feel well, and you won’t be pressured into trying treatments that don’t appeal to you.

You can support your mental resiliency by eating well and exercising, even if you don’t feel motivated to do so. Practice good stress management techniques, like listening to your favorite music, escaping in a novel or getting out on a nature trail.

Southern Hills Hospital specializes in the psychiatric needs of our geriatric patients in the Las Vegas area. We provide compassionate inpatient and outpatient care for adults ages 50 and older, and our community hospital is working on an expansion project to meet the psychiatric needs of younger adults and adolescents. You can direct questions about our geriatric psychiatric services to a registered nurse at (702) 916-5023.


How older adults can get fit

If the health benefits of exercise could be packed into a pill, countless seniors would consider taking it. Unfortunately, that would mean missing out on one of the most attractive perks of working out—having fun! Exercise gets a bad reputation for being boring and repetitive, but the truth is that working out can be just as invigorating and engaging as you want it to be. Here at Southern Hills Hospital, it’s the mission of our orthopedic, stroke and geriatric specialists to help older adults enjoy great quality of life. Let us know how we can help you get active.

Try Wii fitness games

Videogames are usually a sedentary activity enjoyed by youth—but not when it comes to Wii fitness games. Nintendo Wii is designed specifically to get people up and moving. With the handheld console, you can play simulated games like the following:

  • Yoga
  • Skiing
  • Bowling
  • Tennis
  • Baseball
  • Golf
  • Fishing
  • Archery
  • Swordplay

As you can see, there’s a Wii game to suit everyone’s interests. As an added bonus, playing Wii games together with your grandkids is a great way to develop closer relationships.

Strength train with your groceries

If you’d rather not purchase a gaming system, you can use what you already have in your home to build muscle strength. You can use pantry items to do bicep curls and overhead presses. Start with something lighter, like cans of vegetables, before moving on to heavier objects like half-gallon water jugs.

Consider talking to a physical therapist or fitness trainer before you start. It’s important to use proper form to prevent injuries while strength training.

Learn martial arts

Martial arts can be fun for all ages. Consider joining a low- or non-contact martial arts class like Tai Chi, Qigong, Bagua or Hsing-I.

These are the internal martial arts. This means they focus on cultivating mental strength. With their rhythmic, dance-like movements, these martial arts can help you develop:

  • Balance
  • Coordination
  • Physical stability
  • Lower body strength

Check your local senior center or community center for martial arts classes designed for adults.

For the compassionate, patient-focused care you deserve, you can put your trust in Southern Hills Hospital. We are a leading provider of superior orthopedic care, stroke care, geriatric psychology and emergency care for patients of all ages in the Las Vegas area. You can speak with a member of our dedicated nursing team by calling (702) 916-5023.


When to seek medical care for gallbladder issues

The gallbladder is a small organ found in the upper right section of the abdomen. It’s responsible for storing bile, which plays a role in the digestion of fats. There are many problems that can affect the gallbladder, including gallstones. In some cases, patients are diagnosed with a gallbladder problem after seeing their family physician. Others seek emergency care at Southern Hills Hospital for severe symptoms. Our state-of-the-art hospital in Las Vegas is proud to feature sophisticated robotic surgery services, including minimally invasive gallbladder removal.

Seek emergency care for severe pain

Gallstones won’t always cause pain. Typically, symptoms occur when a gallstone blocks a bile duct. This can cause sudden pain that rapidly becomes worse.

Severe pain is always a good reason to seek emergency care, regardless of its potential cause. If the cause of the pain is gallstones, patients will feel it in the upper right area of the abdomen.

The pain might also extend to the center of the abdomen, right shoulder and between the shoulder blades. It may last anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. Some patients may experience nausea and vomiting.

Gallstones aren’t the only reason to seek emergency care, however. Acute cholecystitis, which is the sudden swelling of this organ, can cause the following symptoms:

  • Sharp or cramp-like upper belly pain
  • Fever
  • Clay-colored stools
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Yellowing of the whites of the eyes

Seek emergency care for possible gallstone complications

Acute cholecystitis often occurs as a complication of gallstones. Gallstones can also cause blockages of the common bile duct and pancreatic duct. Symptoms of a blocked bile duct can include the following:

  • Dark urine
  • Fever
  • Yellowing of the whites of the eyes
  • Pale-colored stools
  • Itching
  • Upper right abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting

See your doctor if minor symptoms don’t go away

Gallbladder problems aren’t always medical emergencies. When you watch this featured video, you’ll hear a general surgeon at Southern Hills Hospital explain that minor symptoms can sometimes indicate gallbladder problems if they persist or recur. These include:

  • Unexplained aches and pains
  • Nausea
  • Indigestion

If you need emergency care in the Las Vegas area, please call 911 without delay. Southern Hills Hospital’s emergency care physicians and nurses are available around the clock to provide prompt and courteous medical care. For general questions about our patient-centered hospital services, you can contact a registered nurse at (702) 916-5023.


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