It seems that we live in an age of scary health statistics and images and news of people suffering from horrible conditions all around us. It is no surprise then that health anxiety is on the increase with many people panicking about every little cough and cold they encounter. This is leading to high stress levels in many individuals and a very overstretched NHS service. Dr Google is one of the main culprits for this as people search for explanations of their symptoms rather than visiting professionals for advice. There are of course some symptoms that should be checked out by your GP but they do not always mean something life threatening. Here are some of the symptoms the NHS recommends you visit a doctor to find the cause of:
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding
Of course a regular monthly bleeding is to b e expected in women who have started their menstrual cycles but irregular bleeding can be a sign of an underlying condition such as polycystic ovaries, which in some cases can cause problems with your fertility. It can also be a sign of your body adjusting to the contraceptive pill and in some cases can be a sign of cervical distress. This can be due to an underlying infection such as HPV which needs to be looked into and possibly treated or other sexually transmitted infections. If you think you may have been exposed to such as an infection you can use Home StI kits from companies such as https://www.bexleysexualhealth.org/home_sti_kits
- Unexplained weight loss
If you are not actively trying to lose weight or started a new fitness regime and you notice that you have lost more than 10 pounds over a 6 month period you may want to visit your doctor for a quick check up. There are a number of reasons for sudden weight loss such as an overactive thyroid and diabetes, but it is important that you seek the advice of your doctor to rule out any other conditions that may need immediate treatment.
- Altered bowel habits
Again the odd episode of constipation or diarrhea is not a cause for alarm but if you notice that your bowel movements have changed completely or that you fluctuate between the two states you should speak to your GP. This could be down to a change in your diet, stress or the emergence of an IBS type illness. If you notice blood in your movements you should always seek medical advice.