Vitamin B12 deficiency in teens can lead to nervous system damage, anemia in later life, warn doctors – ET HealthWorld

Pune: Just like vitamin D deficiency even low levels of B 12 are commonly seen in people of all age groups, especially teenagers. One has to maintain the recommended levels of B12 just like vitamin D, zinc, iron, or calcium levels in the body. Today, a majority of teenagers are deficient in B12 which can land them in serious trouble such as anaemia, low-grade inflammation, fatigue, tiredness, cognitive health problems, difficulty in walking, numbness, or tingling in the hands, legs, or feet, inform doctors

Insufficient vitamin B12 levels can cause various serious complications and it is the need of the hour to monitor the adolescents vitamin B 12 levels, Dr Sanjal Nagarkar, General Physician, Apollo Spectra, said, “Vitamin B 12 is essential to make red blood cells, nerves, DNA, and nerve functions. The signs and symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency are sensations like numbness or tingling in the hands, feet, or legs, inability to walk, anemia inflamed tongue, inflammation in the body, cognitive health problems, fatigue, irritability, poor appetite, low muscle tone, depression, vomiting, diarrhoea, hyperpigmentation, seizures, delayed growth, poor motor development, and tiredness. One can become low on vitamin B12 when the body does not absorb or store enough of the vitamin or one doesn’t get enough of it. B12 deficiency is one of the most neglected problems. Deficiency of vitamin B 12 increasing due to fads of diet, fast food intake of balanced diet.”

Adding to it Dr Prerna Agarwal, Manager Technical Operation Apollo Diagnostic, said, “Once you notice symptoms such as tingling and numbness in legs and feet, poor appetite, walking difficulty and impaired memory then consult the doctor without any delay. Vitamin B12 levels need to be checked. If it’s low doctors might suggest supplement or injection. Your treating doctor will direct you regarding how much and how to take it. High levels of B12 levels can also be harmful to health. Timely detection of B12 deficiency and prompt treatment can help teenagers to avoid severe complications like neurologic issues and blood disease by improving growth and development.”

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