If you suspect that you or a family member may have a type of brain injury, the prospect of seeking advice from a brain specialist may seem scary. The truth is, brain specialists (neurologists) are just like any other medical specialists, and their advice is most useful in ruling out more troubling brain disorders.

Because the symptoms of many health conditions overlap with those of brain issues, you should determine whether you have a brain condition before focusing on a conventional treatment regimen. Typically, your primary physician will refer you to a neurology specialist to determine if you have a brain condition.

Here are the top five reasons you may be referred to a neurologist by your primary doctor:

1. Memory Fog and Forgetfulness 

Unfortunately, forgetfulness is a part of the aging process, but if you forget things at an accelerated rate, you should consult a neurologist.

If you find yourself confusing words, freezing in mid-thought, or forgetting to do tasks common to your daily routine, these are all symptoms of dementia and Alzheimer's disease that you should have checked out.

2. Constant, Painful Headaches

Pain is a universal method that is used by the body to tell you that there is a problem. Headaches happen for many reasons, including poor diet.

If you are experiencing constant headaches with other possible neurological issues, your doctor will refer you to a nervous system specialist for an evaluation.

3. Sudden Vision Problems

As a person ages, their vision deteriorates gradually. However, if you notice a sudden change in the quality of your vision, such as blurry vision, it could be a sign that you have had a stroke.

Vision issues can be symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS) and brain cancer, which are also conditions that are treated by a nervous system specialist.

4. Decreased Sense of Feeling

If you notice that your parts of your body have gone numb, especially if it affects one side of your body, you may have had a stroke and need the attention of a brain specialist as soon as possible.

5. Loss of Mobility or Dizziness 

Dizziness can occur if you have not eaten enough or have other nutritional deficiencies. Equilibrium issues can also be an indicator of inner ear problems. These are common and can usually be recognized immediately by your doctor.

If your doctor has trouble diagnosing why you are having dizzy spells, tripping often, or losing balance, they will refer you to a neurology specialist to make sure everything is working correctly.

These signs only represent the most common reasons why you should seek the advice of a brain specialist. If you feel you have other problems that may be connected with the nervous system, consult with your primary physician for a referral to a neurologist.