We would all like to believe that we are pretty healthy, and although most of us probably are, there are those among us who might be thinking much more highly of our health status than we should. There is a host of hidden health problems that only cause subtle symptoms that most people think of as “normal” and insignificant but are really warnings about something more serious that’s going on. People tend to pay a lot of attention to symptoms like persistent pain but might be very quick to dismiss symptoms that seem common, and that could be a serious mistake. Have you noticed that you are suffering from any of these seven symptoms that you should probably pay more attention to?
1. Bad breath
Talk about a first date nightmare! Most people would do almost anything to avoid offending others with foul-smelling breath but it’s not just the social implications of this embarrassing condition that you should be worrying about. There’s no doubt that almost all of us experience “morning breath” on a regular basis or might be a bit less pleasant to be around after adding a bit too much garlic to the pasta sauce, but chronic bad breath is something that you should pay attention to.
It’s not uncommon for bacterial infections of the throat, mouth, nose and digestive system to cause bad breath. The same thing is true for yeast infections, which we might otherwise tend to associate with other parts of the body. Less common but still worth paying attention to is the possibility that bad breath could be the result of something more serious like acid reflux (GERD) or even certain types of cancer.
2. Brittle nails and thinning hair
Problems with fingernails that break too easily might be more than just an inconvenience. Brittle nails could be your body’s way of telling you that you are suffering from malnutrition, anemia or liver disease, especially if they also have a pale appearance.
Hair loss is something else that should not be dismissed too quickly. Everyone is accustomed to losing a bit of hair on a regular basis but it’s worth paying attention to if you start losing more than you usually do. Hair loss can be an indication of thyroid trouble, which can lead to a whole host of other health problems that can actually be life-threatening.
It’s quite likely that there are millions of people who would readily agree that snoring is a very serious problem, but it’s important to look at this problem as something that’s potentially more serious than the cause for a lousy night’s sleep or a bedroom spat. Snoring can indicate sleep apnea, which is a condition that causes people to stop breathing for periods of time. People with this condition have a 40 percent higher chance of dying early. Snoring could also be a symptom of heart disease or high blood pressure.
4. Low sex drive
There are many circumstances that can result in a low sex drive, including some prescription medications, mental health problems, and excessive stress. It’s also true that our sex drive tends to diminish as we get older and that some people just have a naturally-occurring lower drive than others. On the other hand, a sudden drop in sex drive can also be a warning sign for more serious considerations like diabetes, arthritis, hormone imbalances or even cancer.
Those that suffer from regular bouts of insomnia will probably tell you that it’s a pretty serious problem in its own right and who could blame them? We all need a certain amount of sleep in order to function normally and being deprived of sleep can result in all kinds of problems, including accidents that could result in serious injury or death. The inability to sleep can be an indication of other serious conditions such as depression, asthma, arthritis or even Parkinson’s disease.
A headache is something almost all of us has some experience with, and although they can be quite unpleasant and inconvenient, most of the time they are harmless and will go away on their own before too long. In other cases, it could be important to pay attention to a headache, especially if it starts happening more frequently than usual. Headaches can be the result of a serious infection, high blood pressure or stroke. Serious causes such as brain tumors and meningitis are less common but should not be overlooked.
While bloating will often result from over-eating or as a result of a woman’s normal and expected monthly cycle, those causes should be relatively easy to separate from other instances where bloating is something that should be further investigated. Unexpected and persistent bloating can also result from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and less commonly, celiac disease or even ovarian cancer.