10 Overlooked symptoms of cancer you should not ignore
Early detection is better than cure. Protect yourself against this unpredictable fatal disease by knowing its early, unusual symptoms before it's too late!
Nothing beats early detection, especially when it comes to cancer, which is a life-threatening illness whose symptoms often mask themselves until it is too late.
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, make sure not to take it for granted. See your doctor immediately to find out the true reason behind it.
1. Difficulty swallowing
Also known as dysphagia, difficulty in swallowing is commonly seen in those who suffer from GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease. However, if it recurs over a long period of time, it could also be a sign of esophageal cancer, according to Cancer.net.
2. Recurrent stomach pain
Though it can also be indicative of many other digestive disorders, such as enteritis or food poisoning, it could also be a symptom of colon cancer. According to MayoClinic, bloody stool or a significant change in your bowel movement over time may be a warning sign you should not take lightly, especially if it is coupled with sudden weight loss or fatigue.
3. Bleeding gums
Spotting bleeding in the gums could mean you need to better hygiene due to gingivitis, but it could also be telling you something more serious is going on. Cancer Center says that Leukemia often presents itself through easy bruising and bleeding in the mouth.
If you experience shortness of breath, be sure not to brush it off, especially if you're a smoker. Sure, it could just be due to fatigue or pre-existing conditions like asthma, but it could also be a symptom of cancer. Make sure it isn't by visiting a doctor.
5. Dark lines under the nails
Melanoma, though not commonly discussed, is a dangerous type of cancer. One of its symptoms is the formation of dark lines under the nails, which are easier to spot on people with darker complexions, says DermNet NZ. If you spot an unusual discoloration, see a specialist immediately.
6. Pain the bones during night time
Though it can be a sign of the flu, it could sadly also be bone cancer. Watch out if the pain soon appears during daytime and after intense activity, too. Do not ignore or simply self-medicate, go to the doctor immediately.
7. Dark urine
Passing dark urine could mean several things. It could be a sign that you are severely dehydrated, but it could also be an effect of kidney or urinary tract infection. But, it could also be a symptom of bladder cancer, warns the American Cancer Society.
8. Chronic sore throat
In this heat, it's normal for mouth sores to erupt. But swelling, chronic sore throat, or painful chewing could be signs of mouth cancer, says WebMD. Make sure to consult a doctor if any of these symptoms aren't responding to any form of medication or home remedy.
9. Neck lumps
Feel the sides of your neck. Are there irregularities or lumps? Though they can mean you're just getting over an infection, which caused your glands are swollen, they could also be thyroid lumps. If coupled with pain, fatigue, persistent cough, and difficulty swallowing, see your doctor as soon as possible.
10. Hoarseness of the voice
Hoarseness is commonly seen in those whose occupation requires them to use their voices a lot: call center agents, singers, teachers, etc. But be warned that it could be indicative of laryngeal (voice box) cancer. See your doctor if you're consistently losing your voice.
Remember: nothing beats early detection! You can also lessen the risks of developing these types of cancer. If you are experiencing any symptoms on this list, there's no need to panic. When consulting your doctor, they will consider a variety of factors, like your lifestyle and medical history, before they come to a diagnosis. It's important to do your part to help catch it early on!
Be sure to check out theAsianparent Community for more insightful stories, questions, and answers from parents and experts alike. If you have any insights, questions or comments regarding the topic, please share them in our Comment box below. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Google+ to stay up-to-date on the latest from theAsianparent.com Philippines!