Health & Wellness

5 strange body symptoms and what they mean

Our bodies are complicated machines. While it's easy to get spooked when something out of the ordinary happens, there is usually no reason to panic.

Still, unusual symptoms shouldn't be ignored. And while you shouldn't run to Google for every weird body quirk that occurs, you may want to keep these five unusual symptoms in the back of your mind. NBC News medical contributor Dr. Natalie Azar stopped by to discuss these five symptoms you've probably never heard of:

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'Geographic tongue' and other strange symptoms you shouldn't ignore

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'Geographic tongue' and other strange symptoms you shouldn't ignore

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1. Geographic tongue

If you have dry white patches that occur in weird shapes on your tongue, it could be a sign of celiac disease, a serious genetic autoimmune disorder where consuming gluten leads to damage in the small intestine.

"The tongue can take on the look of a map," said Azar, explaining where the name originates from. Other symptoms of celiac disease include diarrhea, fatigue, vomiting or weight loss. Though any changes in your mouth or tongue warrant a visit to the doctor.

The American Academy of Oral Medicine
Splotchy white spots on your tongue could be a sign of celiac disease.

2. Sweet cravings

Craving chocolate, doughnuts or cookies? You're probably dehydrated. When your body is dehydrated, it can be hard for organs to release glycogens, which help to provide energy for the body, so you actually start to crave food, and frequently, sweet food.

RELATED: 8 tips for dealing with sugar cravings

This is more likely to happen after a workout. To re-hydrate, grab a snack that has high water content like fruits and vegetables, or a drink with electrolytes.

Other symptoms of dehydration include increased thirst, fatigue, dry eyes or blurred vision, headaches, muscle cramps, lack of sweat, dark urine, fever and shriveled and dry skin.

RELATED: How do I know if I'm dehydrated?

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Craving ice, discolored nails: What strange symptoms may be telling you

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Craving ice, discolored nails: What strange symptoms may be telling you

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3. Achy Achilles heel

Your Achilles tendon is a tough band of fibrous tissue that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. It's located on the back of your ankle. Any pain in your Achilles tendon or heel can be a symptom of psoriasis. According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, swollen "sausage-like" fingers and toes are also a sign of psoriatic arthritis, a type of tendon pain that is linked to the skin condition.

A doctor may recommend an over-the-counter pain reliever to treat it.

4. Vivid dreams or nightmares

You could be pregnant! No one knows exactly why, but some pregnant women report experiencing a change in their dream state while they sleep during pregnancy. It may be a result of hormones and sleep patterns changing, since pregnant women tend to sleep more than usual.

RELATED: 19 ways to tell (and guess!) if you're having a boy or girl

5. Thinning eyebrows

If your eyebrows are getting thin or you notice you're losing hair there, it could be a sign of hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is a health condition where your thyroid gland doesn't produce enough of certain hormones that your body needs. Women over 60 are more likely to have this condition.

Other symptoms include sudden weight loss, rapid or irregular heartbeat, sweating and nervousness or irritability.

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