They may seem innocuous, irritating facts of life.
But a leading charity has warned not to dismiss them and six other key changes in your body, for fear they could be a sign of something more sinister.
The 10 red flags for cancer are ingrained in the minds of doctors and healthcare workers the world over.
But Cancer Research UK is urging members of the public to familiarise themselves with the key symptoms – in their bid to help save lives.
A new study published today revealed one in two people born after 1960 is likely to develop cancer at some point in their lifetime.
With the risk increasing so quickly, experts fear as many as two-thirds of today’s children will be diagnosed with the disease.
But in many cases early diagnosis can mean the difference between life and death for cancer patients.
A survey by researchers on behalf of Cancer Research UK found almost half of those displaying at least one red flag for cancer did not visit their GP, thinking their symptoms ‘trivial’.
But experts at the charity advise if you or a member of your family is suffering at least one of these 10 red flag symptoms, book an appointment with a GP straight away:
Persistent cough or hoarseness – could indicate lung cancer
A change in the appearance of a mole – could mean you’re suffering skin cancer
A persistent change in bowel habits – could be a sign of bowel cancer
A sore that does not heal – depends on where, a mouth ulcer could mean mouth cancer
Persistent difficulty swallowing – can mean a person is suffering oesophageal cancer
Unexplained weight loss – can indicate several types of cancer
Persistent change in bladder habits – could be a sign of bladder cancer and prostate cancer in men
An unexplained lump – can be a warning sign of many forms of the disease
Persistent unexplained pain – depending on where, can denote many types of cancer
Unexplained bleeding – depends where but can mean bowel, cervical or vulval cancer
Dr Richard Roope, Cancer Research UK’s GP expert, said: ‘The advice we give is: if in doubt, check it out – this would not be wasting your GP’s time.
‘Often your symptoms won’t be caused by cancer, but if they are, the quicker the diagnosis, the better the outcome.
‘Seeking prompt advice from your GP about symptoms, either on the phone or during an appointment, could be a life-saver, whatever your age.
‘And the good news is that more than half of all patients diagnosed with cancer now survive for more than 10 years.’