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Are you anemic?

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Are you anaemic?

What is anaemia?

Anaemia (or anemia) is the most common disorder of the blood.

According to World Health Organisation, anaemia is a condition in which the number of red blood cells or their oxygen-carrying capacity is insufficient to meet physiologic needs, which vary by age, sex, altitude, smoking, and pregnancy status.

Iron deficiency is thought to be the most common cause of anaemia globally, although other conditions, such as folate, vitamin B12 and vitamin A deficiencies, chronic inflammation, parasitic infections, and inherited disorders can all cause anaemia.

In undeveloped or developing countries, iron deficiency anaemia is considered to be worsening, combined with HIV, worm infections, tuberculosis and malaria.

Anaemia global pregnant

Pregnant women with anemia worldwide statistics

Anaemia is considered to be responsible for low pregnancy rate and psychical and intellectual underdevelopment in infants. Anaemia is affecting every second pregnant woman, contributing to 20% of all maternal deaths. Anaemia consequences include high risk morbidity in children. Almost 40% of pre-school children are considered anaemic. In adulthood, severe anaemia can lead to reduced work productivity.

So, literally, what happens when you are anaemic?

The most common symptom of anaemia is spotted while you examine your level of fatigue. Therefore, if your answer is positive to the following questions, you might be anaemic:

  • Do you feel tired when you wake up and also the rest of the day?
  • Do you have trouble concentrating, because you feel tired?
  • Do you lack the energy to accomplish several basic tasks during the day, or they seem to wipe you out?

If your answer is yes to the previous questions, you need to determine if you rather feel weak, or dizzy.  Weakness and dizziness are the key-clues regarding anaemia.

Severe anaemia can lead to severe symptoms, like:

  • Cold feet
  • Pale skin
  • Headaches
  • Palpitations and/ or chest pain
  • Irregular or shortness of breath

If you gather some of the symptoms listed above, you should visit your doctor.

A simple blood test can correctly determine if you are anaemic or not, but it can't determine the cause of your anaemia.

Understanding the different types of anaemia

Iron deficiency anaemia is the most common cause of anaemia in the world. Symptoms of this condition are usually linked to pregnancy or child growth cycles.

The amount of iron that you ingest may not be enough to fulfil your organism needs during heavy menstrual periods.

Poor iron absorption can be caused by intestinal diseases, that can also cause intestinal bleedings and iron loss.

You should also note that, you should not eat a poor, restricted diet, or you may not get enough amount of iron in your body.

The challenge: Improve your condition

Treatments for anaemia are dependent of its severity and cause, but they are not individualised.

  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet
  • Increase the intake of iron in your body, by digesting oral iron. Taking oral iron supplements, along with vitamin C, can help the body to absorb more iron.  If this is proven to be ineffective, you have the option of parenteral iron
  • Blood transfusion, for the stable, but anaemic patient, have been the subject of many controversies and clinical trials, according to British Medical Journal of Anaesthesia
  •  Hyperbaric oxygen treatment for anaemic patients, as an alternative treatment, strongly recommended by the  Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society
  • Erythropoiesis-stimulating agent, recommended when the parenteral iron remedy doesn't give the expected results.

Why should we stop immunodeficiency anaemia?

Anaemia children

Anemic children worldwide statistics

Proper treatment can restore personal health and can lead to a raise of productivity in all affected countries, up to 20%. Not stopping it, it can get in the way of your life quality and proper development.

The good news is that, for most people, anaemia can be easily treated and in a few weeks they can get their health restored and their energy levels back on track.

We have both the means, and the potential for improvement, so why not start now?