Constant drowsiness may be a sign of illness. Its complications are really serious

Constant drowsiness may be a sign of illness.  Its complications are really serious

We usually downplay constant sleepiness, explaining it with an intense lifestyle. If this symptom persists for a long time, it is worth looking for the cause. One of them may be anemia.

We often blame excessive sleepiness on being tired. Indeed, in most cases this is the reason for our desire to go back to bed. But what if we sleep the recommended number of hours a day, but we still feel sleepy and tired, and this is not a one-time condition, but a permanent one? First of all, it cannot be ignored – it is very important to consult a doctor, look for the cause and, if necessary, implement appropriate treatment.

Excessive sleepiness may indicate anemia

Excessive sleepiness is one of the symptoms of anemia, a condition in which there are not enough red blood cells in our blood to carry the amount of oxygen the body needs. Its most common cause is iron deficiency or blood loss. One of the most common symptoms of anemia is the feeling of constant fatigue and sleepiness. This condition manifests itself in the body in the form of great weakness. Symptoms that a person struggling with anemia may also notice include:

  • paleness,

  • irregular and fast heartbeat,

  • frequent headaches,

  • pain in the chest,

  • feeling of lack of air/difficulty breathing,

  • problems with concentration,

  • dizziness.

The above symptoms are not very specific, so at the very beginning a person with anemia may not associate them with this particular disease. However, if they persist for a long time, they should be a “warning signal” that something bad is happening in our body.

What are the consequences of untreated anemia?

Anemia, due to its tiring symptoms, can significantly reduce the patient's quality of life, but the effects of this disease, if not treated appropriately, can be much more serious. Anemia, depending on its course, may be short-lived and reversible, but in extreme cases it can also lead to death. The consequence of such untreated anemia may also be serious complications. It may lead to a weakening of the immune system and susceptibility to the development of bacterial and viral infections, but that is not all. Untreated anemia may also result in problems with the cardiovascular system, muscle weakness and impaired brain function. Pregnancy complications may also occur (for example, the risk of premature birth or fetal malnutrition increases).

Researchers from Pennsylvania State University noticed a correlation between untreated anemia and hearing loss. Scientists from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden observed that children of mothers who were anemic in the first 30 weeks of pregnancy have a greater risk of intellectual delay, as well as autism spectrum disorders and ADHD. Korean researchers, however, noticed a connection between anemia and the onset of dementia in seniors. In children, untreated anemia can lead to heart problems and stunted growth.

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