Anaemia is a critical health concern in India, affecting over 50 per cent women. Usually, haemoglobin less than 12 gm/dL is considered as anaemia, and women are at a higher risk for developing anaemia. Several reasons contribute to anaemia: poor nutrition, worm infections, heavy and abnormal menstruation, and pregnancy where there is a higher need for haemoglobin in the blood.
Anaemia is a condition that occurs when your body does not have enough healthy red blood cells or haemoglobin . Anaemia is of different types, such as aplastic anaemia, iron deficiency anaemia, sickle cell anaemia, thalassemia, and vitamin deficiency anaemia .
Symptoms of anaemia
The signs of this condition vary depending on the cause, and in some cases, you may not have any symptoms . The common symptoms of anaemia are fatigue, weakness, pale or yellowish skin, irregular heartbeats, shortness of breath, dizziness, chest pain, cold hands and feet and headaches . In most cases, the symptoms of anaemia are not noticeable and can worsen as the condition worsens .
Causes of anaemia
Iron deficiency is the most common cause of anaemia . The other causes are when your body does not make enough red blood cells, bleeding causes you to lose red blood cells more quickly than they can be replaced and your body destroys red blood cells (auto-immune condition) .
Types Of Anaemia
- Iron deficiency anaemia: This type is caused by a shortage of iron in your body.
- Vitamin deficiency anaemia: A diet lacking in folate and vitamin B-12 and other key nutrients can cause decreased red blood cell production, resulting in this type of anaemia .
- Aplastic anaemia: In most cases, the condition develops because of idiopathic reasons, i.e. unknown reasons. According to studies, it has been ascertained that aplastic anaemia is caused when the immune system mistakenly targets the bone marrow.
- Sickle cell anaemia: This type can be inherited and can be severe in some cases and is caused by a defective form of haemoglobin that forces red blood cells to assume an abnormal crescent shape.
- Haemolytic anaemias: This type of anaemias develops when red blood cells are destroyed faster than bone marrow can replace them.
Risk factors for anaemia
Menstruation, intestinal disorders, pregnancy, a diet lacking in iron, vitamin B-12 and folate, chronic conditions (cancer, kidney failure, diabetes), family history and other factors such as certain infections, blood diseases and autoimmune disorders increases your risk of anaemia .
Complications of anaemia
If not treated on time, anaemia can result in severe fatigue, pregnancy complications, heart problems and even death .