With our busy lives, it is often easier to ignore medical symptoms and use the age-old excuse “I’ll go to the doctor if it gets worse.” However, this could be vastly detrimental to your health.
Indeed, there are some symptoms that can be put off until a later date. But there are others that require urgent medical attention and should always be checked out by your physician.
In this article, we will be exploring what these symptoms are and the potential risks of ignoring them.
Whether you feel otherwise healthy or you are experiencing debilitating symptoms, visiting your doctor can help to alleviate any concerns you may and potentially diagnose a serious medical condition.
While you may find it distressing to learn that you have a health problem, it is far better to be aware of it and obtain treatment than to suffer in silence.
One of the most potentially serious problems that anyone can experience is chest pain. In some cases, this may be nothing more than a minor problem like strained muscle or bruised ribs. However, in more critical cases, it could indicate problems with the heart. Chest pain is also one of the most common pneumonia symptoms, especially if it increases when you breathe or cough.
A heart attack is the most common condition relating to chest pain. Chest pain should be taken very seriously, especially if the pain feels like something pressing down on the chest. Furthermore, you may experience pain radiating down the arm, shortness of breath and sweating.
In less serious situations, the pain in your chest may have to do with the digestive system. For example, it may be a condition like reflux or indigestion.
Sudden or Persistent Headaches
Everyone experiences a headache from time to time, and this is completely normal. But if you find yourself with a sudden shooting pain in the head or consistent headaches that don’t go away with normal treatments, this could be a sign of something more significant.
If you experience a sudden onset of head pain that gets worse quickly, this could indicate an aneurysm. This is a potentially life-threatening burst blood vessel in the brain that requires immediate medical attention.
Meningitis is a relatively common illness and often appears in children. Symptoms can include a headache, an aversion to light and stiffness. A lot of patients also develop a rash that does not fade under pressure. This is a medical emergency.
If you have persistent headaches, this could mean a number of things. One of the more serious conditions may be syphilis. Syphilis symptoms often include a rash on the hands or feet, sores around the genitals and high temperature. Without treatment, this condition can be extremely serious but a short course of antibiotics will clear it up.
It’s no secret that modern life can take its toll, and so it is common for people to feel overly fatigued. However, with a short break from work and some good rest, you will normally find that this tiredness lifts. In contrast, becoming easily exhausted could be one of the more serious multiple sclerosis (MS) symptoms. This may be coupled with vision problems, bladder issues and numbness. It should always require a consultation with your doctor.
MS affects the spinal cord and the brain, but there are many other reasons why you might be feeling exhausted. Some could be less severe, such as pregnancy, but others may warrant a little more intense treatment, such as liver disease, depression or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Lupus symptoms often include a headache, and this auto-immune condition requires regular, ongoing treatment.
Shortness of Breath
Being short of breath is massively unpleasant, but for many people, it is a common complaint. For those with breathing conditions such as asthma, COPD and lung cancer, this symptom is a daily battle. However, if you have not already been diagnosed with an illness and develop shortness of breath, there could be many underlying reasons.
During flu season, it could be a sign of this common illness. However, it may also be one of the bronchitis symptoms. This is a chest infection that develops as a result of inflammation of the airways and should always be treated.
Sudden Unexplained Weight Loss
Unless you have actively been trying to lose weight, dropping pounds could be a sign of an underlying health condition. The most concerning one is cancer.
However, there are many other illnesses that this could be attributed to including tuberculosis (TB). This is a bacterial infection that affects the respiratory system, particularly the lungs. While it isn’t as common in modern times, it is still a threat. TB symptoms include weight loss, chest pain and high fever. The treatment for this involves a long course of antibiotics and the condition is notoriously difficult to treat. However, the sooner you seek medical advice, the easier it should be.
Persistent High Fever
A fever can accompany a variety of illnesses, and in most cases, it will go away on its own. However, if you are experiencing a persistent fever, it is essential that you see your physician. Generally, a fever is related to a virus, some of which are very serious and may require hospital treatment. However, it can also be a sign of cancer, and for this reason, it should always be addressed.
Pain in the abdomen can be caused by several conditions, some of which are minor and require little to no treatment. This might include a gastrointestinal virus, menstrual cramping or constipation. All of these conditions can usually be treated with over-the-counter medication.
In contrast, certain stomach pains can be caused by something more serious. For example, if you experience vomiting, nausea and a temperature, these could be food poisoning symptoms. Usually, this is something that can be managed at home.
Furthermore, abdominal pain could be one of the stomach ulcer symptoms. These painful sores within the stomach can potentially cause serious problems such as internal bleeding. If you have pain in this area, it is crucial to book an appointment to see a doctor.
Appendicitis symptoms often include sudden, sharp pain in the right lower side of the abdomen. This condition is considered to be a medical emergency and if left untreated, it has the potential to become life-threatening.
Your health is one of the most important things you have. While minor ailments can be treated at home, there are some symptoms that you should always get checked out. It may be intimidating, since many of these symptoms can point towards a serious condition. However, for many people, they may also indicate something much easier to treat.
The only way to know is to see your doctor and obtain a formal diagnosis.