For most of us, the process of managing a health condition tends to be rather linear. You notice symptoms, you visit a doctor or other medical professional for advice, and then pursue treatment.
However, a huge number of health conditions can go undetected for many years. There are two reasons this can happen: the symptoms are very vague and apply to a large number of different illnesses (headaches, fatigue, and so on) or the condition develops so gradually, its symptoms just become a standard part of life that you adapt to as required. Below, we have detailed three conditions that are known for flying under the radar, so you can always take the appropriate action if any of the symptoms sound familiar…
#1 – Hypothyroidism
Hypothyroidism is a condition that means the thyroid gland is no longer able to produce sufficient amounts of thyroid hormone; the condition is sometimes simply referred to as “an underactive thyroid”. The symptoms include tiredness, weight gain, muscle cramps, dry or coarse hair, and poor tolerance to the cold – for example, people with hypothyroidism may feel cold when others feel perfectly warm and comfortable.
Thankfully, the condition is relatively easy to diagnose (blood tests are usually sufficient) and treatment involves medication that replaces thyroid hormone in the body; a treatment that is very effective and capable of providing effective relief.
#2 – Celiac disease
Celiac disease relates to how the body processes gluten, a group of proteins found in grains such as wheat and barley. For those with Celiac disease, eating gluten causes their immune system to essentially overreact and attack healthy tissue, which results in malabsorption. Over time, this immune response can lead to GI cancers – though only if left untreated for literally decades. Symptoms of Celiac include bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss, and fatigue, and symptoms are usually particularly pronounced after eating foods that contain gluten.
The treatment for Celiac disease is relatively straightforward; people are advised to switch to a strict gluten-free diet, and then undergo regular monitoring to ensure that this measure has been sufficient. Thankfully, eating gluten-free is easier than it has ever been before, and there’s plenty of interesting recipes to try, such as:
#3 – Hearing loss
Age-related and noise-induced hearing loss can both develop very gradually, potentially over the course of decades, and may be completely undetected by the individual. There are, however, a few signs that can indicate a person may be experiencing hearing loss, such as the perception that people are mumbling, regularly needing to increase the volume on media devices, and feeling fatigued after socializing.
If the condition is diagnosed – usually following a hearing test – then treatment can be pursued via hearing aids. Modern hearing aids are intricate, cleverly-designed devices that offer great battery life and usability, so people usually respond very well to treatment.
All of the above conditions can often go undetected for many years, but when identified, treatment can be hugely effective. If any of the symptoms listed above sound familiar, then visiting your doctor for further advice is sure to be the right choice for your future health.