Anemia is a condition when your blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells. Your red blood cells carry oxygen to different parts of the body by binding with hemoglobin. When there is a lack of red blood cells in your body, the hemoglobin also gets low, and sufficient oxygen can not reach your organs. Low hemoglobin is also known as anemia.
Anemia can occur due to various causes, and the healthcare provider treats it according to the cause. It is not a serious condition but can occur due to some serious illness.
In most cases, a healthy diet and supplements can help in getting rid of anemia. But sometimes, you may need an iron or blood transfusion.
If you have a complaint of fatigue and lethargy, you should visit the healthcare provider soon. For an expert opinion, you can consult with the Best Internal Medicine specialist in Lahore.
What are the Symptoms of Anemia?
The symptoms of anemia depend upon how low your hemoglobin is. They can be severe if your hemoglobin is very low.
The general symptoms of anemia are:
- Fatigue and weakness
- Shortness of breath upon little physical activity
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Pale skin
- Cold hands and feet
In the initial stages, the symptoms of anemia are not quite noticeable. But they may progress as your hemoglobin keeps declining.
What are The Risk Factors for Anemia?
Factors that can increase the risk of anemia are:
A Diet Low in Iron and Vitamin B 12
Consuming a diet low in iron and vitamin B 12 can lead to anemia because your body needs them for the production of red blood cells. To get enough iron and vitamin B12, you should eat red meat, lentils, legumes, and green leafy vegetables.
The nutrients get absorbed in the intestines from the food you intake. Therefore if you have any disease of the intestine such as Crohn’s disease or celiac disease, the risk of anemia is raised for you. Therefore your healthcare provider may ask you to get an iron transfusion to overcome iron deficiency.
Women who menstruate are at greater risk of getting anemia as compared to post-menopausal women because they lose blood through the vagina. It happens every month, so your body can be left deficient. Moreover, women who get heavy bleeding during periods are at increased risk of anemia.
Various chronic health conditions can lead to anemia in one or another way. Diseases such as malignancies of the bone marrow and kidney diseases can cause your hemoglobin to drop dramatically. To cope with anemia due to other diseases, you may need to get a frequent blood transfusion.
An ulcer in the stomach can cause blood loss, thereby leading to anemia. Other diseases in which bleeding occurs can also lead to anemia because your body loses red blood cells that carry hemoglobin.
Having a family history of a certain type of anemia, such as sickle cell disease can increase the chances for you too. Sickle cell anemia is a disease that your parents may pass to you through in genes. In it, the shape of your red blood cells becomes sickle-shaped. Due to this, they can not carry enough hemoglobin molecules, resulting in anemia. Sickle-shaped red blood cells may also get clumped with each other.
Other factors that can lead to anemia are:
- Certain infections
- Blood disorders
- Autoimmunue disroders
- Drinking too much alcohol
- Getting an expsoure to toxic chemicals
- Taking certain drugs
Women of the reproductive age and those over the age of 65 are at increased risk of getting anemia.
The Bottom Line
arious factors can play a role in causing anemia. Therefore you should eat a diet rich in iron-containing foods. If you have a complaint of shortness of breath or fatigue, you must visit a healthcare provider. For more information, you can visit oladoc.com.