Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Are you tired all the time?

It is natural to be tired after a long day or if you lack enough sleep but are you tired even if you get enough sleep or rest?

Most people do not take this problem seriously and think it is because of some common or silly causes as I mentioned before. Some of the common causes of tiredness are depression, boredom, lack of sleep, etc. However there can be problems like a vitamin or mineral deficiency or anemia. These if left unnoticed for a long time can cause serious problems.

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Recently one of my close friends was diagnosed with Pernicious Anemia (Vitamin B12 deficiency). This is common in older people however my friend is only 21 years old and still he has it. There are two reasons for this B12 deficiency, one of them is diet, where you don't get enough B12 from food. People who are vegetarians are more prone to this condition as B12 is only found in eggs, meat (especially red meat and liver) and diary products. The second reason is when our body lacks a protein called intrinsic factor. Usually, intrinsic factor is released by cells in the stomach lining, where it attaches to vitamin B12. This vitamin B12-intrinsic factor complex then enters your small intestine where it is absorbed into your bloodstream. If your small intestine is unable to absorb vitamin B12, you become deficient and develop anemia.

The symptoms he was experiencing was tired and sleepy all the time and he went to about 3 different doctors and all of them said it might be because of stress and anxiety or he might be sleeping less and all other things. Actually only a blood test is needed to figure out this condition but none of these doctors even suggested that. Finally after months of researching online he figured out himself it might be pernicious anemia. He went to the doctor and asked them to do a blood test for him. The result was received after 1 week and it ruled out that he was actually anemic and the normal level of B12 is from 200 to 900 pg/mL. He was having as low as 130 and he was under B12 injection soon. Now he feels a lot better and he is enjoying the life. However he needs to take this injection once every 3 months life long. He really feel the difference and can't even imagine the problems he was going through before this. We have been friends for 5 years and he is sitting next to me even when I write this blog!

My message is that If you feel tired or sleepy, it might be 95% of the time due to the common lack of sleep or rest. However if you persistently are tired and sleepy, don't look any further just go and see your doctor as soon as possible. What is the point of suffering all these problems just because you are scared to see a doctor and find out you have some problem?  Remember The sooner the better!

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