Fashion Magazine

Do You Feel Tired? B12 Deficiency

By Mollylouise
Today I'm going to share a little bit of my life with the internet. My day to day life trying to function as a person but not really succeeding.
I'm a tired person both physically and mentally, although I know that I shouldn't be this way as the people around me are not constantly laying asleep. I'm the person who goes to bed and wakes up 16 hours later still waking up exhausted. This led me to visiting the doctor's as something wasn't quite right...
How it all started, back in March 2017 I visited the doctors about a constant throbbing headache which left me barely able to move - this was on the 3rd day of struggling and only getting worse. The doctors then had me admitted to A&E for further testing as the doctor at the GP surgery couldn't rule out more sinister reasons such as a minor stroke/bleed to the brain. Those 8 hours in A&E consisted of a blood tests, CT scans and a painful lumbar puncture. I was under anaesthetic when I was discharged to go home. I had my car with me so my mom had to drive me home. As I walked to the exit of the hospital the anaesthetic wore off which resulted in me dropping to the ground like a sack of potatoes. The next few days consisted in me being temporarily disabled unable to move my legs and back. I felt miserable not being able to go to work and being bed bound, unable to eat due to having to move my back to sit in the right position to eat and digest. Whilst this time off bed bound I decided to read my doctor's notes to find out what was happening to myself, the hospital dismissed this admission down to a severe migraine and 'minor' blood abnormalities - the latter was not raised to me and was not investigated further. I just thought this abnormality could be due to the stress of the visit to hospital. I was wrong.
A year or so later about June this year, I was recommended to visit the doctor's due to panic attacks and low mood by my employer as they saw a decline in my usually self. I spoke with a triage nurse who recommended that I saw the mental health nurse working for the practice. I spoke to the nurse who ruled out depression although he did say it could be anxiety. As I was about the leave satisfied with what we had spoken about he asked "do you feel tired?" I knew for sure that I was, I didn't have a waking moment that I wasn't fatigued in some sort of way. My answer of 'Yes' prompted another blood test, which came back again with abnormalities.
This was then taken somewhat seriously by the doctor's surgery. I was advised that I was B12 Deficient. Not only did I have a deficiency, I have Pernicious Anaemia. Pernicious meaning deadly - if this isn't diagnosed or treated properly this could have more serious repercussions as you get older and sadly I have noticed this even at the tender young age of 20.  I was put on B12 injections daily for a month and have to visit every 3 months for further injections to keep me boosted. This is something that I will have to put up with for the rest of my life.
Medical facts and information
Do you feel tired? B12 Deficiencysource: NHS
What is a B12 Deficiency/Anaemia?
Red blood cells carry oxygen around the body using a substance called haemoglobin.
Anaemia is the general term for having either fewer red blood cells than normal or having an abnormally low amount of haemoglobin in each red blood cell.
There are several different types of anaemia, and each one has a different cause. For example, iron deficiency anaemia, which occurs when the body doesn't contain enough iron.
Symptoms of Anaemia
  • extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • lack of energy (lethargy)
  • breathlessness 
  • feeling faint
  • headaches
  • pale skin
  • noticeable heartbeats (palpitations)
  • hearing sounds coming from inside the body, rather than from an outside source (tinnitus)
  • loss of appetite and weight loss
Do you feel tired? B12 Deficiency
Symptoms of B12 Deficiency
Vitamin B12 and folate perform several important functions in the body, including keeping the nervous system healthy.
A deficiency in either of these vitamins can cause a wide range of problems, including:
  • extreme tiredness - one of my symptom
  • a lack of energy - here's another one
  • pins and needles (paraesthesia) - and another
  • a sore and red tongue
  • mouth ulcers - and another
  • muscle weakness - and another
  • disturbed vision
  • psychological problems, which may include depression and confusion - oh here's another 
  • problems with memory, understanding and judgment - and another
Some of these problems can also occur if you have a deficiency in vitamin B12 or folate, but don't have anaemia.

What caused my B12/Anaemia?
Do you feel tired? B12 DeficiencyThere are a number of problems that can lead to a vitamin B12 or folate deficiency, including:
  • pernicious anaemia – where your immune system attacks healthy cells in your stomach, preventing your body from absorbing vitamin B12 from the food you eat; this is the most common cause of vitamin B12 deficiency in the UK - This was my diagnosis.
  • a lack of these vitamins in your diet – this is uncommon, but can occur if you have a vegan diet, follow a fad diet or have a generally poor diet for a long time
  • medication – certain medications, including anticonvulsants and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), can affect how much of these vitamins your body absorbs 
Both vitamin B12 deficiency and folate deficiency are more common in older people, affecting around 1 in 10 people aged 75 or over, and 1 in 20 people aged 65 to 74.
What's the worst that can happen?
Although it's uncommon, vitamin B12 or folate deficiency (with or without anaemia) can lead to complications, particularly if you've been deficient in vitamin B12 or folate for some time.
Potential complications can include:
  • problems with the nervous system
  • temporary infertility
  • heart conditions
  • pregnancy complications and birth defects
Adults with severe anaemia are also at risk of developing heart failure.
Some complications improve with appropriate treatment, but others – such as problems with the nervous system – can be permanent.

Love Mollyxo

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog