Many of us are guilty of trying to tough it out if we feel unwell or we notice changes in our health. While it’s often possible to get over minor ailments and injuries without the need for treatment, it’s important to seek advice if you notice certain symptoms. Here are some warning signs you should never ignore.
Unexplained weight loss
Unexplained weight loss can be a sign of several health conditions, many of which may not be severe. It is likely that there is nothing to worry about if you’ve lost weight without making major changes to your diet or exercise regime, but weight loss, particularly rapid weight loss, can be dangerous.
In some cases, unexplained loss of weight can be linked to cancer or health problems that are connected to digestive issues. It is always best to get checked out to rule out serious problems.
Feeling down for prolonged periods
We all have days where we lack energy and we feel down or sad. These are natural human emotions, which are often associated with stress, bad news or traumatic life events. If you feel down for several days, there is no clear cause, or you start to struggle to get out of bed or lose enthusiasm for things that normally make you feel happy, seek advice from your doctor.
Family doctors, like those at Victory Medical, should be your first port of call. It’s important to understand that it’s not normal to go through prolonged spells of feeling low or helpless. There is help and support available and there is no shame in reaching out. We tend to be more reluctant to seek help for mental health issues than physical problems, but mental well-being should be a priority for all of us.
Lumps and abnormal swelling
Abnormal lumps and swelling can be symptomatic of cancer and this is why it’s crucial to get them checked out by a healthcare professional. Most lumps are harmless, but it’s always best to investigate them as early as possible. If a lump does turn out to be cancerous, early diagnosis can improve the prognosis dramatically.
Changes in your bowel habits
Most people will experience changes in their regular bowel habits at some point in their lives, usually due to stomach upset or eating something that doesn’t agree with them. Temporary issues are usually not anything to worry about, but if you spot signs, such as blood in your stools or you have recurrent bouts of diarrhea or constipation, it’s important to see your doctor.
Changes in bowel habits can be linked to stress, food intolerances and digestive disorders, but they can also be a symptom of some forms of cancer.
It’s beneficial to keep an eye on your health. It’s not always easy to spot early warning signs of conditions and diseases, but if you do notice a change in your health, you don’t feel yourself, you can feel a lump or you’ve lost weight without trying, don’t hesitate to seek advice.
It can be tempting to ignore symptoms and hope that they go away, but being proactive in reaching out for help can lower the risks of serious disease and improve treatment outcomes.