Your body is a complex system that’s just as intricate as any other machine. Everything inside you is connected somehow, so your neck or back may be the cause of the pain that’s radiating down your leg. It’s hard to pinpoint the exact origins of some problems, but frequently you receive distinct body signals or red flags that something is wrong.
For instance, if you sleep on your neck wrong, you might have a stiff neck and a massive headache when you wake up. The headache is an indication that you’ve twisted or misaligned some vertebrae, which is causing discomfort. Some warnings are subtle reminders that you’re getting older and have some issues.
Think of your body as a car. You may put up with that rattle in the dash because you know it’s not severe. However, when you see smoke rolling out of the engine, or it won’t go over 24 mph, you know it’s time to get it to the shop.
Ten Ways the Body Signals When Something Is Going Wrong
Your body will let you know when it’s time to see a doctor, and there are some things, like an arthritic shoulder, that you learn to manage. However, there are other times when your body signals you need immediate help. Here are ten things that indicate a health concern, and you should address them.
1. Spots and Peeling on the Nails and Cuticles
Your nails should be clear and bright, but if the color is off, it’s a sign of trouble. If you smoke cigarettes, you can expect your hands to have discoloration from nicotine and oxygen problems. However, did you know that your nail beds can also show you have a vitamin deficiency?
If you notice spots on your nails along with peeling or symptoms like fatigue, dizziness, or heart palpitations, it can be a sign of a B-12 deficiency. Your body needs vitamins to function correctly, and if you’re running low on these vital nutrients, you need to take a supplement or eat foods rich in these vitamins to increase the levels.
2. The Body Signals Distress by Redness on the Face
If you have read splotches across your nose, cheeks, forehead, and chin, you could have a condition called rosacea. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, estimates show that more than 414 million people suffer from this condition. It looks worse than it is, but it can cause some embarrassment and acne.
The good news is that it’s easy to treat. It’s important not to think these signals are just from acne, as lupus also causes a red butterfly rash on the face. When considering the autoimmune condition lupus, the inflammation will be predominantly across the bridge of the nose, and other symptoms will accompany it.
3. Yellow Skin
Any tinges of yellow on your skin are a significant health concern that you must address. The yellowing almost always comes from a liver issue, and it can be deadly if left untreated. If you drink a lot, the yellow skin can signify cirrhosis of the liver.
Even if you don’t drink, you can develop cirrhosis from hemochromatosis or fatty liver disease. Hemochromatosis is where the body has an overabundance of iron, according to the Mayo Clinic. This person must have their blood removed and purified before being put back into the body to survive.
Fatty liver disease is also dangerous as it’s often a silent killer. Fat cells build up in the liver, and this organ cannot purge toxins from the body. Thankfully, most people can control this condition, according to Harvard Health Publishing, by eating healthy and exercising.
4. Discoloration Ring Around Your Collar
If you notice a discolored, darkened ring around your collar, it’s not because you didn’t wash well enough. These dark spots that appear in the neck folds signify many issues. Commonly, it’s a sign of a condition called polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).
According to the National Library of Medicine, PCOS is a medical condition caused by a hormonal imbalance from cysts inside the ovaries. It’s the number one cause of infertility, as it directly impacts women during their childbearing years. These rings that appear on the neck can indicate imbalanced hormones, and they can also indicate diabetes.
5. Vertical Brown Stripe on the Nail
White spots on your nails might not be nearly as severe as a brown stripe. This signals melanoma or skin cancer, among other things. Melanoma is one of the health concerns that doesn’t seem as harsh as different types of malignancies, but it’s deadly.
Bob Marley, the famous singer who won the hearts of millions in the 1960s, died from skin cancer under his toenail. He was only 36 years old, according to an article on The Skin Cancer Foundation.
6. Puffy Eyes Are One of the Body Signals You May Receive
Puffy eyes can come from allergies, but it can also signify that your salt intake is too high. Salt causes the body to swell in many areas, and the legs, feet, and eyes are just a few. Your eyes can tell you a lot, and this puffy condition can be an indication of things like Grave’s disease or a sleeping disorder.
While a cold compress or tea bag can help remove the unsightly puffiness, it’s not addressing the underlying problem. If this is a repeated problem, you need to have a doctor handle it.
7. Cracked Heels Are One of the Body Signals That Something’s Amiss
It’s not uncommon for you to get dry skin during the winter months, especially on your heels. You probably don’t give this condition much thought, as it seems ordinary. However, dry heels can also signal a deeper problem, like diabetes or a thyroid disorder.
It would help if you soaked these rough heels in some soapy water to kill any bacteria and then applied some moisturizer that has shea butter or lactic acid to it. If you have diabetes, it’s possible these heels could develop fissures or cuts that won’t heal. It would help if you had a doctor look at this as once an infection sets into this area, it can be impossible to cure with varying glucose levels.
8. Mouth Ulcers
If you bite your tongue or your cheeks, you can develop ulcers inside your mouth. While this is a common occurrence, it can cause an infection in this region. However, these ulcers can appear even if you don’t have an anxiety issue that causes biting.
Things like smoking, iron deficiency, and a B-12 problem can cause these ulcers to form too. There are usually other symptoms of these deficiencies within the body, as these shortcomings don’t happen overnight. Another thing to consider is poor dental hygiene.
You may have an ulcer that’s around an infected tooth, which is a sign of an abscess. An abscessed tooth is one of the signals you don’t want to ignore. The infection can quickly get into your bloodstream and cause sepsis, according to The Sepsis Alliance.