We talk a lot about medical alertness and what symptoms should force you to see a doctor, but sensitivity to your own body can play a cruel joke. When the urge to take care of yourself turns into a fear of getting sick, any small change can be perceived as a dire symptom. This happens not only because of hypochondria , but also because of insufficient knowledge about the human body or belief in some kind of “norm”, often imposed. Here are ten symptoms that are often not as scary as they seem.
A sharp pain in the chest, which does not allow to breathe in, breathe out or move normally, terribly frightens – it seems that the heart has grabbed. But still more often the causes of pain lie in neuralgia – irritation of one of the intercostal nerves. Distinguishing these conditions is quite simple: neuralgic pain worsens when breathing, laughing or moving; the pain associated with the heart remains pressing, burning, pulling and does not change, no matter how you try to move or breathe deeply. Heart pain is called angina pectoris and is felt primarily behind the breastbone. Angina pectoris is a reason to seek emergency help (for example, call an ambulance).
Intercostal neuralgia often occurs after sleep, when the muscles have not yet warmed up, for example, when suddenly getting out of bed or turning; it happens that the chest is cramped after an intense workout. This pain goes away rather quickly, and you can help yourself with stretching and gentle movements. And although if neuralgia often worsens, it is worth going to see a specialist, you should not be afraid of a single episode of pain.
A small amount of creamy white or clear discharge on any day of the menstrual cycle is a physiological phenomenon. The mucous secretion helps the vagina and vulva to function normally and maintain a healthy microflora. Consistency can vary depending on the phase of the cycle (for example, during ovulation, discharge resembles egg white). A brownish discharge or a small amount of blood may also be normal at certain times – for example, when you are getting used to a new contraceptive. It is best to discuss with your doctor when prescribing a contraceptive what to look for and what you should not be afraid of.
If the discharge has become yellow, gray, green, has greatly increased in volume, or acquired an unpleasant odor, you need to see a doctor. Causes can range from sexually transmitted infections to vaginosis or vaginitis caused by heat, tight clothing, or poor hygiene (such as while hiking). The gynecologist will advise which means for intimate hygiene is best suited . Recall that pads for every day only protect the laundry from discharge, but they do not contribute to the health of the vulva.
Bad breath in the morning
We have already said that in most cases, bad breath occurs due to dental diseases and is much less often associated with diseases of the stomach, palatine tonsils, paranasal sinuses, or with peculiarities of the diet. All this applies to situations when the smell is there during the day, and after brushing your teeth, it does not disappear or quickly resumes. Dry mouth, unpleasant sensations and a “stagnant” smell right after waking up in the morning is another matter, and it is completely normal even for people with healthy teeth and excellent hygiene.
The salivary glands work actively during the day, but less saliva is produced at night. A dry environment encourages the growth of bacteria that produce foul-smelling volatile sulfur compounds. Rinsing your mouth or brushing your teeth is usually sufficient to freshen your breath. In the long term, it will not hurt to quit smoking and monitor alcohol consumption – this will contribute not only to the morning feeling of freshness, but also to prevent many diseases.
The temperature is not 36.6
One of the myths inherited from Soviet medicine is the myth that the only normal body temperature is 36.6 degrees Celsius. For some reason, neither daily fluctuations nor individual variability were taken into account. Many people remember how their parents dragged them to clinics for examinations because of the persistent temperature of about 37 degrees. In fact, normal body temperature is a whole range , from about 36.1 to 37.2 degrees, and during the day it can change by about half a degree.
The temperature also depends on the place of measurement (in Russia, it is most common to do this in the armpit, but young children often measure the temperature in the mouth, ear or rectum). The result can also be influenced by purely technical reasons, such as calibrating an individual thermometer – therefore, it is better to use the same thermometer to track changes during illness. Technical errors can also cause unexpected deviations in the test results, so the correct tactic in identifying changes that do not agree with the general picture is to first repeat the blood or urine test.
Dots and grooves on the nails
“Nail diagnostics” is an extremely popular phenomenon on the Internet. In the lists of the causes of the appearance of dots, grooves and spots, anemia, heart failure, kidney dysfunction and many other not harmless conditions are called. But we must understand that with such serious violations, not only the nails will suffer, and they are unlikely to be the first to attract attention. If any elements on one or several nails appeared against the background of full health, you should not be alarmed – they are almost certainly caused by a small local trauma inflicted during a manicure.
Hair loss after childbirth
Intense hair loss, which begins three to four months after giving birth, is a completely natural condition that should not be blamed on poor shampoo or perceived vitamin deficiencies . In fact, less hair than before pregnancy will not become – only “accumulated” hair will fall out during this time. During pregnancy, due to hormonal changes, the resting phase of the hair becomes longer, and a few months after childbirth, a large number of hairs simultaneously enter the phase of hair loss. There is no need to worry about the hair itself, and it will not be possible to help with any special treatment – this period will simply have to be endured.
Lymph node enlargement
The “appearance” of a previously invisible lymph node scares many people, making them suspect the worst thing – leukemia or other oncological diseases. In reality, these diseases are extremely rare, and the lymph nodes do not appear or disappear, they just sometimes increase in size from intense work. The cause can be any disease like a cold, when an increased load falls on the lymphatic system; sometimes lymph nodes are visible or easily palpated in healthy people, especially those of thin build.
Pediatrician Sergey Boutroux in his blog says that caution should cause a steady increase in the lymph nodes of 2-3 cm or more (normal size of these structures – up to 1 cm), enlarged lymph nodes of different groups and the absence of obvious reasons for this, according to the doctor.
It is believed that fluctuations in the menstrual cycle in the range of 21 to 35 days are not a deviation. Stress can lead to them as a result of climate change, a long flight, changes in the nature of food and activity – that is why “extraordinary” periods for many come on vacation.
The reason without a pronounced onset may be the onset of perimenopause , a period of gradual preparation of the body for menopause. This condition can begin around the age of thirty-five or forty with irregular periods. This is not a disease, and you should not be afraid – but in order to control the process and maintain good health, it is better to contact a gynecologist-endocrinologist.
If you find yourself in a room from time to time, not remembering why you went there, do not panic; it is most likely not Alzheimer’s. Lack of sleep, stress and overwork can lead to forgetfulness , and attempts to relax with alcohol also do not contribute to good memory and concentration. Another reason may be taking medications: some antidepressants, heartburn medications, or anti-allergic medications.
To keep your memory in good shape, it is best to try to eliminate the causes of forgetfulness: to monitor sleep hygiene and at least partially reduce the load. For short-term memorization, there are several life hacks : for example, a list of products that you need to buy can be decomposed in your mind into the dishes that you are going to cook (or you can just write everything down on a piece of paper or on your phone).
Cellulite and stretch marks
Just recall that cellulite is not a disease or a defect, but a feature of the skin inherent in most women and some men, stretch marks are found in almost 90% of people of both sexes. The latter can be a little scary at the first occurrence: fresh stretch marks are usually red or purple in color, but over time they become subtle.
It is impossible to “cure” these conditions, and their prevention is doubtful – for this it would be necessary to eliminate any hormonal fluctuations associated with puberty. Regular activity and a varied diet are essential for maintaining optimal muscle and skin condition. It’s not even that good physical shape will make cellulite less noticeable – it will help to love your body and stop paying attention to imaginary “flaws”.