Serious health issues are hard to ignore, or so most people think. You're probably aware of what a healthy diet looks like, and that you should exercise at least three times a week to stay in peak physical condition. However, when it comes to those common health complaints, you may wait until things get worse before seeing a doctor, or you may not get them checked at all.
Everyday ailments like skin problems and constipation can be annoying, but they can also be signs that something is wrong. Either way, it’s important to stay vigilant and clued-up about your health. Here are five signs of poor health that you probably ignore, but shouldn’t.
Because yellowing of the teeth happens gradually, it can easily get overlooked. Stained teeth can be a symptom of a poor diet or simply part of the ageing process. However, the fading of tooth enamel can also indicate a something more serious, such as an infection or smoking-related condition. If you’re bothered by a yellow smile, the good news is that you can reverse the process with a whitening treatment. You can have the procedure done by your dentist, or buy an LED teeth whitening kit to use at home.
Although snoring may be annoying to their partners, most people don’t consider it a serious problem. On the contrary, regular snoring can be an early indicator of sleep apnea, a disorder characterized by obstructed airways that make it difficult for sufferers to breathe at night. This condition increases the risk of pulmonary hypertension and heart problems later in life.
There are many common causes of itchy skin, such as allergies, sensitive skin, or eczema. However, chronic itching can be the first sign of liver disease, so it’s important to get it checked. Although itching in pregnancy is common as the bump grows and stretches, it can also be a symptom of obstetric cholestasis, a liver condition that severely affects both mother and baby. For this reason, you should always see your primary care physician if you notice any skin changes when you’re expecting.
Don’t ignore changes to the nails on your fingers or toes, as they could be indicative of a health problem. Pale nails could be a sign of malnutrition or anaemia, while white nails can signal liver failure. If your nails have a blue tint, you should see your doctor immediately, as this could be a sign that your body isn’t getting enough oxygen.
Everyone’s bowel movements are different, but if you don’t need to use the toilet at least once a day, it could be a sign that something is wrong. Certain medications, pregnancy, and hormonal changes can make it difficult to pass stools, but it could also be a sign that your diet is lacking essential nutrients, or that you have a problem with your thyroid or digestion tract. Speak to a doctor or dietician if chronic constipation is getting you down.