Most people fail to get an annual medical examinations and put their health at risk. Although it’s advisable to get an annual check-up with the doctor, there are other early warning signs that you can look out for to make sure everything is running OK. Below are 7 vital early warning signs that could save your life.
1. Sudden weight gains or losses
Sudden increases or losses in weight can signal serious health issues. Sudden gains in weight may be due to hypothyroidism, adrenal disorders, fluid retention due to congestive heart disorder and kidney disease. Don’t rule out pregnancy either.
Sudden decreases in weight could be down to depression (caused by huge drop in appetite), cancer, autoimmune disease and hyperthyroidism.
If you have experience sudden weight loss or gains do not hesitate for one second to visit your GP and get checked out.
2. Check your urine for a consistent light yellow colour
Urine tests can reveal a lot about your diet, how much you’re exercise, whether you’ve taken narcotics and give a good indicator of your overall health.
In fact your urine has more than 70 markers that can give doctors an idea of how your body is functioning overall. Urine tests can help identify and prevent degenerative diseases, gluten intolerance and much more.
Your urine will be a little darker in the morning. But if it’s unusually darker than you will need to see a doctor about it. Oddly there are websites dedicated to urine colour such as (http://www.urinecolors.com/) which make for interesting reading.
3. Heart rate overdrive
Healthy people should have a very high heart rate [higher than unhealthy people] during exercise and low heart rates during rest. To take your heart rate you must measure total beats per minute (bpm).
To work out your resting heart rate, first empty your bladder and relax in a chair for a minute or two and begin measuring your heart rate for a minute either on your neck or wrist using your index and middle finger.
40-60 is a good resting heart rate, over 70 is a cause for concern.
4. Do a wheeze test
Many of us simply accept that our lungs aren’t going to be as good as they were during our late teens. While to a certain degree this is true. In many cases (10% in fact) adults suffer from asthma and are not diagnosed.
If you get out of breath far quicker than other people who are of similar health to you. Or if you breathe hard and your air passage ways make a whistling sound during heavy breathing that could indicate asthma or other respiratory illnesses.
Doctors can easily carry out tests to determine your lung function to diagnose any issues there and then.
5. Dental checkups more than just cosmetic.
When buying a used car, just walking around and examining the bodywork can give a pretty good idea of the car’s history. Crashes, repair work undertaken, and general tardiness of previous owner becomes apparent. If there are slight knocks and scratches everywhere, then it’s safe to assume that the clutch or engine may have taken the same beating too because of bad driving.
Dental health can provide signs of other more serious health issues such as heart, lung and digestive conditions that you may need to look up.
Inflammation, redness, bleeding gums can be caused by gingivitis, which if untreated can lead to periodontal disease. At that stage it can lead to heart disease as bacteria from the gums can enter the bloodstream and spread to other parts of your body, even your heart.
Like your teeth, your skin can give you an overview of your diet and health. Uneven skin tone, spots, rashes can indicate diet and hydration related issues. More critically it’s important to check your skin for growth of moles and birth marks. Sudden appearance and growth can indicate cancer. If caught early it’s easy to treat. But if caught late it can cause the cancer to become aggressive and more difficult to treat.
7. Poor memory
Studies have shown that as technology improves our memories tend to get worse. This is because we can rely on computer software to remind us of important events and other bits of information we need to remember.
For instance, how many phone numbers did you know by memory when you were a child and how many do you know now?
Poor memory can also be caused by cortisol build up (stress hormone) which short circuits your memory. Exercise reduces cortisol so you will find that you can learn a lot better after periods of exercise.
Poor memory can also be hereditary and indicate more serious brain illnesses such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. So keep exercising your memory using Brain Training games on the DS. And if you notice a sharp decline in memory consult your doctor.
Note: This list is by no means complete, and should NOT be a replacement for an actual physical examination from a qualified doctor.