FEELING thirsty is common, it can mean a number of things.
It can simply mean you are in need of a little more hydration, or it is a red flag something more sinister is wrong.
Feeling very thirsty could be a sign of advanced bowel cancer[/caption]
If you have noticed you are unable to quench your thirst lately it is worth mentioning this to your doctor.
They will most likely suggest a diabetes test initially, as this is a common symptom of the disease.
But if this comes back as clear and you still feel you have an issue, it’s time for a deeper dive.
While you shouldn’t always immediately leap to cancer, feeling constantly thirsty could be a sign of advanced bowel disease.
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Unfortunately, bowel cancer is a slow burner and often doesn’t throw up obvious symptoms until it is quite late on.
But, as with all illnesses, the earlier you catch it the better chance you have of properly treating it.
Late stage bowel cancer tends to produce more than one symptom, such as aches or pain, feeling tired, reduced appetite, weight loss.
If the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, like bone tissue, it can cause hypercalcaemia.
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This is when calcium is released into the blood from damaged bones, and can make patients feel thirsty, according to Cancer Research UK.
Other symptoms of this include nausea, constipation, confusion, irritability and tiredness.
Bowel cancer is the UK’s fourth most common cancer and the second deadliest.
It is currently Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, with Bowel Cancer UK keen to make sure Brits know the warning signs.
The five main symptoms of people who go on to be diagnosed with it are blood in your stools, a change of bowel habits, pain in your stomach, weight loss and unexplained fatigue.
Knowing the key symptoms and visiting your GP if you have any of them, or if things don’t feel right, can help increase the chances of an early diagnosis.
Dr Philippa Kaye, GP, author and bowel cancer patient, added: “As both a GP and someone who has had bowel cancer, I completely understand it can be daunting visiting your GP with symptoms.
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“However it is so important that you book an appointment as early as possible – please don’t feel embarrassed, don’t ignore any symptoms and don’t put it off.
“As GPs we are used to seeing lots of people with bowel problems and if you are worried that something is wrong we want to see you. Early diagnosis could save your life.”
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