Sometimes people adopt a tendency to brush aside minor health issues as nothing to worry about, but the reality is such symptoms could be a sign of impending danger. It is true that not every illness could turn out to be fatal, but some have hazardous consequences when not addressed in time. But how would you know whether a symptom is serious or not? As a matter of fact, you can’t. Even the most dangerous of diseases could have extremely minor symptoms. It can be tempting to downplay those small issues, but they could be the only warning you get before the full force of a dangerous disease strikes.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 948,000 Americans reported using drugs and might be your loved ones are addicted and taking some drugs like heroin, alcohol etc.. But how would you know whether a symptom is serious or not? As a matter of fact, you can’t. But you can check the source and monitor the symptoms so that you can help and recover.
If you or your loved ones are usually in denial regarding any health issues, then delaying seeking treatment can have a significant impact on your health and wellness as most diseases and conditions respond best to treatment if they are caught early. Even if you have something as minor as a bleeding nose, nausea, or a headache, it’s better to meet medics. Below are seven symptoms that you shouldn’t ignore;
1. Intense Headache
Although headaches are one of the most common daily medical complaints, ignoring sudden, intense headaches that stop you in your tracks could prove fatal in the long run. According to a recent World Health Organization (WHO) report, almost half of the adult population have headaches at least once a year. The various types of headaches include tension headaches, cluster headaches, migraines, hormonal headaches, hypertension and post-traumatic headaches. Sudden severe headaches are most likely to occur in cases of haemorrhagic strokes. In such a condition the brain bleeds into itself, which demands instant medical attention.
According to the International Headache Society (IHS), there are two fundamental forms of headaches. Primary headaches are caused directly by the structures in the head that are pain-sensitive. Secondary headaches occur when there is a further underlying cause, such as a brain tumour, glaucoma or blood clot. Thus, if your headache is more painful and disruptive than previous ones, it’s high time to visit your doctor.
2. Blood in Faeces or Rectal Bleeding
Rectal bleeding is common among many people, but few seek treatment. Brushing it aside is not recommended in any case because rectal bleeding could be a sign of critical diseases like colorectal cancer, lung cancer, bladder cancer and endometrial cancer. That is why blood seen in the faeces should be reported to your primary care physician. It can also indicate problems such as haemorrhoids, anal fissure, diverticulosis/diverticulitis and ulcers. If you are having rectal bleeding, you can go through a rectal examination or incorporate tests like a colonoscopy to determine the cause of the bleeding. There are many common reasons for spotting blood where you don’t expect it, but it should be checked out and treated.
For your convenience, you can check out on your own and differentiate what you might be suffering from as far as rectal bleeding is concerned. Bright red color indicates problem in the lower gastrointestinal tract, a dark red color may indicate bleeding in the small intestine, and black stool could be a result of bleeding from the stomach.
3. Chest Pain
Chest pain is probably the most common one reason individuals got to the emergency room. There are multiple causes and types of chest pain. You might go feel an intense discomfort, heaviness, or pressure at your chest. A serious form of chest pain is “angina”, which is a symptom of heart disease. This condition usually results from inadequate oxygen supply to the heart muscle. It is highly recommended that you don’t try to work through the chest pain or play it down. Instead, seek immediate medical attention. In the case of a heart attack, chest pain may include other warning signs like pain radiating down your arm(s), nausea, vomiting, sweating, and shortness of breath. Women might experience more subtle symptoms, such as fatigue, a burning sensation or upper abdominal pain.
Examining the chest pain can sometimes be very difficult and may require blood tests, X-rays, CT scans, MRI scans and other tests to carry out diagnosis. Sudden chest pain can also be caused by damage in the aorta, which is called as aortic dissection. The good news is this fatal condition occurs in only about three out of 100,000 people.
4. Sudden Flashes of Light
Sometimes you may see an unexpected flashing light in one or both eyes without any external source. These flashes or floaters are small specks or clouds moving in your field of vision which are usually caused by a ‘pulling’ of the vitreous gel at the back of the eye. According to a report from Harvard Health Publishing, as many as 25 percent people in their 60s have floaters, and that number rises to 65 percent by the age of 80.
If the symptoms come on suddenly or increase, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. These floaters could be a result of a torn retina, which could the lead to permanent vision loss. Timely detection and treatment, generally using lasers or cryotherapy, can prevent blindness. However, it is possible that people might see halos after LASIK eye surgery because of light-related side effects. Sometimes the flashes in the form of jagged lines or heat waves can be the result of migraines.
5. Unexplained Weight Loss
Inexplicable weight loss could be attributed to many causes; these might be medical or non-medical. In any case, you shouldn’t ignore it if this situation persists. Weight loss can result from a decrease in body fluid, muscle mass, fat, or illnesses such as diabetes. One of the best ways to prevent and treat muscle loss is to add more protein and vitamin D to your diet.
There are other and more serious causes of weight loss like cancer, HIV, gastoentritis, and bowel diseases. If you or your loved one has lost more than five percent of their body weight over a period of six months, there is a high likelihood of cancer, and which needs immediate diagnosis.
Another most common reason behind sudden unintentional weight loss is an endocrine disorder, such as hyperthyroidism and overactive thyroid. In such disorders, patients usually suffer restlessness, sweating, increased appetite, and difficulty concentrating. Furthermore, depression and other psychiatric conditions can also lead to sudden weight loss.
6. Sudden or Chronic Abdominal Pain
Abdominal pain can occur because of intestinal gas, but there might be something more serious going on. If you or a family member have a sudden or chronic abdominal pain, there could be underlying issues or alarming symptoms such as gastrointestinal problems, kidney infection or food poisoning. According to a report from National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), there are 60 to 70 million people affected by all digestive diseases. These diseases include abdominal wall hernia, chronic constipation, diverticular disease, gallstones, gastroesophageal reflux disease, haemorrhoids and pancreatitis.
Medical practitioners state that the severity of pain, its location and other accompanying symptoms could provide clues to the origins of the pain. When knife-like stabbing pain is accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and fever, it could be a sign of kidney disease. If that’s the case, get to your doctor as soon as possible. A sudden pain in the lower part of the abdomen may be a sign of appendicitis. If your upper abdominal area is aching without any apparent reasons, it may indicate a heart related problem.
There could be many more cues with which your body is trying to warn you, and which you should never disregard at any cost. The human body is a complex structure that can develop certain ailments at any stage of life. So you need to address any of these health issues before they blow out of proportion. The above seven symptoms are among those that you can only ignore at your peril.
7. Moles That Itch or Bleed
The skin is a wonderful protective layer that can develop spots like freckles, beauty marks, birth marks, and moles. While most of them pose no threat, certain moles that itch or bleed could be a melanoma known more commonly as skin cancer. Moles are brown and black and can appear anywhere on the skin. They can alter color, become raised, or grow hairs. All these behaviors are considered normal if they happen gradually, but cancerous moles behave quite differently in advanced stages. Therefore you should not ignore any of these doubtful formations. It is better to visit a dermatologist the moment you spot a suspicious mole on your skin.
Itchy moles could be attributed to using new products, such as clothes detergents, lotions or soaps. A mole is considered abnormal if the color and spots are not uniform, or it has just changed its appearance. A report from American Cancer Society suggests there were 91,270 new cases of melanoma in 2018 in the United States. Melanoma is considered as the deadliest of all skin cancers.