The symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency are elusive and contradictory at best. The problem in determining if one is lacking in this necessary substance lies in the fact that virtually all the symptoms are commonplace and typical. The only way to be certain that one has a B12 deficiency is to visit a doctor and have a blood test.
For example, symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency can include weakness, insomnia, a sore tongue, pale skin, and white spots on the skin. Symptoms can also include bleeding gums, depression, migraines, memory loss, incontinence, mouth sores, and loss of appetite. These are just a few of the possible indicators, and obviously, they could just as well be signs of a host of other major and minor maladies. Instead of a B12 deficiency, one might be afflicted with gingivitis, headaches, canker sores, or the sort of slowing memory that many times accompanies the aging process.
However, B12 is vital to the proper functioning of the body, and those who suspect they have symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency would be well advised to take their concerns seriously. Vitamin B12 is crucial to creating red blood cells, which transport oxygen to the various organs of the body. Most people acquire B12 via eating appropriate amounts of meat, milk, eggs, and cheese. Sometimes though, people either fail to consume enough of these foods, or their body simply stops the B12 absorption process.
Particularly susceptible to Vitamin B12 deficiency are vegans, the variety of vegetarians who will not consume any foodstuffs derived from animals. By the same token however, unforeseen complications from surgery, parasites, bacteria, Crohn’s disease, or pernicious anemia can also prevent the body from gaining the Vitamin B12 it so desperately needs.
If one has a variety of the symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency, and if they either linger for an excessive period or begin to worsen, then the most wise course of action is to schedule a blood test with a qualified physician. This test will count the number of red blood cells within the blood sample. Only in this manner can a certain determination be made that one is deficient in B12.
Luckily, treatment is usually simple. In some cases, a person lacking adequate levels of B12 will be given direct injections. The number of injections, and how long they must be administered, depends largely upon the severity of the deficiency. In other cases, simply taking B12 tablets will be a sufficient treatment.