20 Things Your Eyes, Hair and Skin Reveal About Your Overall Health

In Your Eyes from 20 Things Your Eyes, Hair and Skin Reveal About Your Overall Health [Gallery]

20 Things Your Eyes, Hair and Skin Reveal About Your Overall Health [Gallery]

In Your Eyes

In Your Eyes

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According to BusinessInsider, more than 30 conditions can show symptoms in your eyes. That's why ophthalmologists and optometrists can be the first to detect a health problem. Peter Gabriel might see “the light and the heat” in your eyes, but here are things your eye doctor can tell about you.

1. Red spots

1. Red spots

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Eyes can get red and irritated from allergies, fatigue, wearing contact lenses and more, but dark red spots on the eye are much more worrisome. Multiple burst blood vessels could indicate you are diabetic. Diabetes causes blood sugar to build up. This blocks the tiny blood vessels in the eye, causing them to swell or burst and leak blood or fluid. This condition is called diabetic retinopathy.

2. White rings

2. White rings

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Unless you’re a beauty vlogger illuminating yourself with megawatt ring lights, a white ring or arc around the iris could be a signal of high cholesterol. In older adults, the ring is caused by fat and cholesterol deposits and is totally normal, but in people younger than 60, it could indicate high cholesterol and higher risk of heart attack and stroke.

3. Eye pain

3. Eye pain

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The optic nerve at the back of your eye is directly connected to your brain. Because of this, neurological issues can sometimes manifest in and around the eye. Unequal pupil size as well as eye pressure and eye pain with no ocular cause could all point to brain issues, such as a tumor, aneurysm, infection or multiple sclerosis (MS).

4. Dry eyes

4. Dry eyes

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Your eyes can feel dry as a reaction to the weather, to cigarette smoke, to starting at screens too long or as a reaction to medication. It’s also an unfortunate side effect of aging, especially in post-menopausal women. But dry eyes can also be a symptom of thyroid disease or autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and Sjögren’s syndrome, so don’t hesitate to see a doctor if dry eyes are a persistent problem for you.

5. Strained or twitchy eyes

5. Strained or twitchy eyes

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Tired eyes are a good indication that your entire body needs some serious R&R. Strained, overly teary or twitching eyes usually mean they’re fatigued and overworked, so power down your devices, switch off your screens and get some shut-eye. If the twitch persists, it could be a sign of a neurological or muscle condition.

6. Night blindness

6. Night blindness

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Night blindness, the inability to see in low light, is a common side effect of aging, but if you’re younger, it could be a sign that you’re not getting enough vitamin A. This deficiency is rare in developed countries and can be treated with supplements or by adding vitamin A-rich foods to your diet like carrots, spinach, kale and sweet potatoes, which promote and protect eye health.

Hair today, gone tomorrow

Hair today, gone tomorrow

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Hair is made from protein and grows from the hair follicles in your skin. Its main function is to retain heat and protect your skin from the elements, but it also serves another handy purpose: Your hair is often revealing about your overall health. Read on to find out what changes in your hair could be trying to tell you.

7. Thinning eyebrows

7. Thinning eyebrows

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It’s not just the hair on your head that can be a barometer for your health. Hair on your arms, legs and even face can show you something is wrong. Hyperthyroidism can cause hair loss, and this actually might be most noticeable in your eyebrows. If the outer third of your eyebrow seems to disappear or they begin to look patchy, your thyroid hormones might be messing with your body’s hair production.

8. Increased hair growth

8. Increased hair growth

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While most people worry about hair loss, increased hair growth could indicate your hormones are off balance. Thicker, darker facial or body hair in women are signs of excess testosterone. Belly fat stores testosterone, so reducing your sugar intake and exercising more could address the problem. The hormonal disorder polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can also cause excessive hair growth on your face, chest, stomach, back, hands or feet as a result of excess androgen.

9. Dull or thin hair

9. Dull or thin hair

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Fancy shampoos and conditioners are not enough to guarantee healthy hair -- your diet fuels your hair growth, so if your diet is out of whack, your hair will show it. Your body prioritizes sending nutrients to your vital organs first, so if you’re not getting enough vitamins or protein, your hair will get jipped and become dull, thin, brittle and even slow to grow. As it’s a protein, hair relies on the substance to grow strong, full and shiny.

10. Shedding

10. Shedding

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If you notice a significant more amount of hair coming out in the shower or in your brush or comb, it could be the sign of an iron deficiency. Anemia, getting too little iron on a vegetarian or vegan diet and heavy periods in women could all be the culprit.

11. Unexplained hair loss

11. Unexplained hair loss

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Receding hairlines and balding with age are common in both women and men, but what isn’t normal is hair coming out in clumps or patches. Stress or an event like childbirth can trigger temporary rapid hair loss, but outside of those circumstances, it can indicate a serious health condition. Hypothyroidism, HIV and types of cancer, such as Hodgkin's lymphoma, can all cause extreme breaking, thinning or loss of hair.

Wearing your heart on your skin

Wearing your heart on your skin

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You’ve heard the expression “wearing your heart on your sleeve,” but it turns out you might be wearing the status of your heart, lungs, liver and more on your skin. The skin is the body’s largest organ and because skin cells are always dividing, your interior condition will affect what shows on your exterior.

12. Hives

12. Hives

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Outside irritants, eczema and allergies can aggravate your skin, but did you know stress can trigger bumps, breakouts, rashes or hives? Stress causes your body to produce hormones that trigger oil production, leading to pimples. Stress compromises your immune system, meaning it can’t fight off irritants that normally aren’t a problem, so your skin could begin reacting to certain foods or even your fabric softener. Your body can also sense that stress is dragging you down and can actually trigger an allergic reaction to fight off what’s ailing you, resulting in itchy hives or rashes. Other more serious conditions such as celiac or lupus can cause hives as well.

13. Wrinkles

13. Wrinkles

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Much like hair loss, wrinkles are an inescapable sign of aging, but if you’re getting them before your time or in unusual places, something might be wrong underneath the surface. Deep, furrowed brow wrinkles in pre- or early menopausal women might be a sign of osteoporosis, as weaker bones are linked to weaker skin that creases more easily. Wrinkles in areas unlikely to show sun damage, such as the upper inner arm, are also linked to higher blood pressure and higher risk for heart disease.

14. Dry lips

14. Dry lips

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Dry lips often indicate you’re dehydrated, either from sweating or simply not drinking enough water. While lip balm might help temporarily, drinking water with rejuvenate your lips from the inside out. Chronically cracked lips can also be an indication of Sjögren’s syndrome, riboflavin deficiency or even a yeast infection.

15. Dark skin patches

15. Dark skin patches

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Don’t ignore or simply try to scrub off darker, thicker patches of skin if they appear on your body. Called acanthosis nigricans, this could be a sign of pre-diabetes, a hormonal condition like PCOS or even cancer, so see a dermatologist right away.

16. Skin tone

16. Skin tone

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If your skin seems discolored with a paler or more yellow tone, you could be anemic or have liver disease, respectively. A bluish or graying tinge, especially on the lips or extremities, could be a sign of poor circulation or low blood flow caused by heart or lung disease.

17. Itchiness

17. Itchiness

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If your skin is itchy all over without a rash or hives, it could be something especially sinister. Liver disease doesn’t cause many distinctive external symptoms, but persistent itchy skin is one of first signs to appear. It’s thought that this is because your liver cannot properly process bile, so it spills out into the bloodstream.

18. Dry skin

18. Dry skin

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Much like optometrists, dermatologists can use their powers of observation to make some impressive deductions. If you have a dry patch of skin on your back, for example, your doctor might ask if you are suffering from neck, shoulder or back pain. Whether it’s an injury or stress, many folks will try and self-treat by taking super hot, long showers and letting the water spray on their backs, which can cause an irregular dry, itchy spot.

19. Nails

19. Nails

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Much like hair, nails are made from the same keratin protein as your skin and also grow from your skin, so they can be a helpful indicator of your overall health. Nails that are strong, healthy and not discolored can mean your body is normal, while thin or brittle nails might be a sign of vitamin or dietary deficiencies.

20. Nails

20. Nails

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If the curve, texture, color or shape or your nails changes or you notice things like pits, striations or peeling, this could reveal an underlying issue such as liver, thyroid, lung or kidney problems.

20 Things Your Eyes, Hair and Skin Reveal About Your Overall Health [Gallery]