If you have anemia, there is something wrong with your red blood cells, and they are unable to get enough oxygen out to the tissues of your body. There are several different types of anemia, each with different factors involved.
Typically, when a person says they are anemic, they are referring to iron deficiency anemia.
Our red blood cells bind iron to oxygen and transport it to different parts of the body for a variety of functions.
When there isn’t enough iron to go around for all RBCs to have an adequate supply, when there is a structural problem with the RBC preventing it from properly incorporating iron into its structure, or there’s been a loss of RBCs that decreases the actual number of iron binding structures to grab oxygen, a person will suffer from poor oxygenation of tissue.
Signs and Symptoms of Anemia
Unexplainable fatigue: Constantly feeling drained
Unexplainable weakness: Strength is diminished, not just due to temporary exertion
Pallor or pale skin: No matter the skin type complexion looks drained.
Brittle nails: May also change in appearance. Fake fingernails may mask this, so check toenails.
Notable hair loss: Hair may also look dull and be brittle.
Fast or irregular heartbeat: Health care provider will assess this.
Shortness of breath: Constantly feeling a little winded, due to poor oxygenation. Call your doctor, as it could also mean several other serious health concerns.
Dizziness: A possible indicator of other health problems. Call your doctor on this one, as well.
Poor cognitive function: Not thinking clearly. This causes problems, from learning math to emotional regulation. If you can’t think straight, you cannot process the world around you.
Pica: Craving non-food items such as ice or clay. Seems embarrassing, but do bring this up to your doctor.