Autoimmune diseases (type 1 diabetes, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, rheumatoid arthritis, and around 80 types overall) are becoming increasingly common around the world. If not diagnosed in time, they may cause serious health conditions that can even become life-threatening. Knowing the most common symptoms is the first step to a better quality of life for you. If you’ve experienced any of the symptoms listed below, please see a qualified medical practitioner.
Autoimmune diseases (AD) are more common in women than men. The diagnosis of ADs is considered to be very challenging, as many conditions from among 80 types have not one but several similar symptoms. Please, write down all the symptoms you have before heading to the doctor. It may take a while before you receive the right diagnosis, but once the AD type has been established, it becomes much easier to work out the treatment you need. We at Bright Side found 10 of the most common symptoms of autoimmune diseases and we want to share this knowledge so that you can make sure you’re not at risk or that you begin the treatment process right away.
10. Abdominal pain or digestive issues
One of the most common symptoms of autoimmune diseases is abnormal bowel movements such as constipation or diarrhea. Crohn’s disease, coeliac disease, hypothyroidism, and many more autoimmune conditions have this symptom. If you experience it, please, refer to a doctor immediately as it may be a sign of a serious disease.
Most of the inflammation of autoimmune diseases is not visible to the eye as it happens inside of the body. Yet there are some signs that can tell you that it’s time to see a doctor, such as a goiter, for instance. A goiter is a swelling in the neck resulting from an enlarged thyroid gland. Any other type of swelling is considered to be a sign of an AD.
8. Persistent or reoccurring fever
Several autoimmune diseases start with a virus attacking your body and you may experience a fever that will either disappear or become a reoccurring event.
Imagine that your immune system has weakened under the influence of an AD and, therefore, the sicker you get, the more tired you feel. If you feel like you want to take naps even after a full night’s sleep, or if you can barely open your eyes in the morning, this is a fatigue symptom of most of the AD diseases. Autoimmune hepatitis, coeliac disease, Hashimoto’s disease, hemolytic anemia, and Inflammatory bowel disease are amongst the ones that have fatigue as a common symptom.
6. Swelling of the glands
Rheumatoid arthritis mainly has swollen gland nodes as a sign, especially if a person has had this disease for a long time. Lupus and sarcoidosis can also cause your gland nodes to swell.
5. Itchy skin and rashes
Itchy skin or even rashes may not only signal that you have an allergy, as most people would think, but also that your body’s immune system is not working well. Type 1 diabetes, Hashimoto’s disease, psoriasis, and many more ADs have an effect on your skin.
4. Tingling sensation
If you notice a tingling sensation in your feet and legs, it would be wise to see a doctor. Tingling may mean you have a serious syndrome: Guillain-Barre. Other symptoms of GB include rapid heart rate, difficulty breathing, and even paralysis.
3. Changes in weight
You’ve been at a normal weight for most of your life and then, suddenly, you either lose a lot or gain a lot. This is a situation when the body’s immune system shuts down the metabolism. There are many ADs that are connected with rapid weight loss or weight gain, namely, Hashimoto’s, coeliac disease, and Graves’ disease.
2. Changes in skin color
If one day you wake up and see a yellow tint to your skin and the whites of your eyes, this is a symptom of autoimmune hepatitis. Looking into the mirror and seeing white patches of skin on your body is a sign of vitiligo.
1. Food allergies
Another symptom of autoimmune diseases is a food allergy. Many people think that a food allergy can be easily treated by taking antihistamine pills, but it is also a sign of such ADs as coeliac disease and Hashimoto’s. The allergy may not look like a rash or itchiness. Instead, your body may begin to retain more water or you may even develop abnormal bowel movements. As soon as you notice that something is not right after eating a specific food, please see a doctor.
Autoimmune diseases are chronic and finding out early on may help you live a longer and healthier life. If you found that you might have some of the above-mentioned symptoms, please make an appointment with a doctor. We would love to hear success stories from AD patients who fight these diseases every day. Please share with us in the comment section below.