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What your skin says about your health

April 12, 2013 by Works with Water
Skin Damage | Radiant Complexion

Many underlying health conditions such as brittle bones, diabetes and vitamin deficiencies may first appear as skin problems according to doctors.

The Huffington post has reported on some of the health problems your skin can help you detect.

So next time you’re in the shower, getting dressed or preparing for your next checkup, take a look and consider some of the signals your skin might be sending you or your doctor:

Bone Fracture Risk:
A study of 114 recently postmenopausal women found that deep wrinkles on the face and neck could indicate an increased risk for broken bones. The reason: women with such wrinkles were more likely to have lower bone density in areas like the hips, spine and heels.

Deeper, worsening wrinkles are a sign that the body is producing less collagen, which often means bone density is decreasing as well.

“The worse the wrinkles, the lesser the bone density,” lead researcher Lubna Pal, a Yale School of Medicine associate professor, said in a statement. “This relationship was independent of age or of factors known to influence bone mass.”

If you discover thick, dark, velvety patches on folds of skin on your neck, armpit or groin, your doctor might want to arrange a blood test to check for diabetes. These patches, known as acanthosis nigricans, could be benign or a normal side effect of obesity, says dermatologist Janet Lin of Baltimore’s Mercy Medical Center. But they also could be a sign of diabetes.

Thyroid problems:
Signs that your thyroid isn’t performing properly — it can be either overactive or underactive — tend to appear first on your skin, typically on the back of your upper arms and the back of your fingers.

At first the skin just seems rough or bumpy, like a mild rash, according to naturopath Alan Christianson of Phoenix. But if the thyroid continues to be out of whack, other areas can be affected, he said, such as the legs, scalp and neck. An underactive gland could result in hair loss, brittle nails or dry, flaky skin.

To find out more early warning signals your skin may be trying to send, check out this Daily Mirror article listing 19 (yes that many!) problems you could see by looking in the mirror…


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