Nobody knows your body more than you do. This is why it is important that you constantly listen to it and observe it for any signs that might tell you that something is wrong. This way, you can get immediate medical attention and prevent the onset of a possible serious health problem. While common symptoms like chest pain would have you rushing to the nearest doctor or hospital, some symptoms are a little more obscure. Nonetheless, you have to be aware of their significance and know when it's time to visit your health care provider.
Unexplained Weight Loss
If you're on a weight loss program and you shed off a few pounds, that equates to success. But if you're losing weight without any rational explanation for it, it can indicate a possible health problem. Observe your weight and if you've lost up to 10 percent of your weight over the past six months, it is a must to see the doctor immediately. This can be a symptom of overactive thyroid, depression, liver disease, cancer, or any other disorder that affects the body's ability to absorb nutrients.
Contrary to what most people think, fever is not actually a disease but a symptom. It is a sign of an underlying disease that the body's immune system tries to fight off, and thus results in a high temperature that we like to call fever. In most cases, fever can signal a viral or bacterial infection inside the body. But if you have a persistent low-grade fever of 102 F (38.9 C) that lasts for more than three days, you should go to the doctor. For something higher 104 F (40 C), don't wait up to three days; seek medical help immediately. This can mean anything from urinary tract infection (UTI) to tuberculosis to lymphomas.
Shortness of Breath
If you find yourself constantly short of breath, this can be a symptom of obstructive pulmonary disease, chronic bronchitis, lung blood clot or pulmonary embolism, asthma, pneumonia, or other heart or lung-related ailments. This can also signal panic attacks if accompanied with other psychological distress symptoms.
Change in Bowel Movement
If you notice an abnormal change in your bowel movements, it is imperative to call your doctor. Bowel movement differs from one person to another so you need to observe your comfort room habits to get a gauge of what normal is for you. Other than that, look for unusual changes like blood in stools, diarrhea lasting for a week, constipation for more than two weeks, and black stools. These changes can be a sign of a bacterial infection like salmonella and campylobacter. It can also be an inflammatory bowel disease or cancer of the colon.
Sudden and Severe Headache
While most headaches should not be cause of concern, there is one type of headache that necessitates immediate medical attention. If you experience a sudden severe headache, accompanied by fever, rash, stiff neck, delirium, or seizures, this can mean brain tumor, aneurysm, or inflammation of the arteries in the brain, eyes or scalp. You need to see the doctor right away.