My B12 Deficiency

I decided that today I wanted to open up to all you lovelies about something I've struggled with for over 10 years! I have a pernicious anaemia which is also known as B12 deficiency and it is something I have really suffered from and unfortunately there is currently no cure so it is something I have had to adapt my life to.

Within the red blood cells in your body, you have 3 components that are essential to allow the RBC's to perform their main function of carrying oxygen around your body. One of these components is vitamin B12 or cobalamin (which you can actually find in a lot of meat, fish and dairy), once it's ingested it binds to an intrinsic factor which allows it to be digested within the intestine. Unfortunately for some people with pernicious anaemia their condition can actually be caused by their bodies inability to produce that factor, although for most people that suffer from PA the problem lies with their bodies actually producing anti-intrinsic factor antibodies which essentially kill off the intrinsic factors that the vitamin B12 need to bind to. Because our bodies cannot tell the difference between the healthy and unhealthy intrinsic factors, it is referred to as an autoimmune disorder as the body kills off all the cells of that type.

Due to this effecting the RBC's within my body, I can suffer from a wide variety of weird symptoms that include extreme fatigue/tiredness (I will give you an example of this further on), shortness of breath that is often referred to as 'the sighs', brain fogs, and mood swings....just to name a few. Often illnesses like pernicious anaemia are often referred to as a hidden or invisible illness/disability because unless you know someone you can't tell just by looking at them (which is an extremely bad way to look at disabilities) and believe me when I say it can be seriously disabling! 

As this is quite a personal issue to post, I thought I would explain you all how it affects me and how I explain it when I am asked about my PA (normally by people who don't really know much about it). 

In typical me fashion, I'm going to explain what living with PA is like involving pearls....

Every morning I wake up and have say about 100 pearls to get me through the it's worth noting that some days are WAY harder than other days and as a result things might take more pearls that day to do. I will wake up and some mornings it will take 2 pearls just to get out of bed (that might sound silly to some people but honestly guys that fatigue is genuinely one of the hardest parts of PA), some mornings I will get up and use 8/9 pearls just to get up out of bed.

Now imagine that everything you need to do throughout the day is going to use pearls; to get up and get a drink is a pearl, going to the bathroom uses 2 pearls, walking to the shop can use up to 10 pearls, doing the laundry or hoovering can use 10 pearls. To get through the day you have to manage your pearls to make sure you have enough, you may skip doing the laundry so that you have enough pearls to make your dinner and make it to bed and sometimes I am literally crawling to bed. It's all a balancing act that changes on a day to day basis!

Unfortunately people don't always understand that things that help are very few and far between. I have had people tell me to take an energy drink or get a can of coke, I've been told to go have a nap or eat more vegetables as that will all help. Unfortunately most people don't realise that I can have a 10 hour perfect sleep overnight and still have a 4 hour nap later in the day and still be tired/ready to bed. Some days I have to physically psych myself up to get up out of bed or off the sofa to go to the bathroom or to get a drink. 

Since my diagnosis a couple of years ago, the only thing that has allowed me to feel semi functioning and human again are my 3 monthly injections of hydroxocobalamin for the rest of my life and as much as I hate saying this but my injection runs out by the second month which means that for a month I seriously struggle (these are the days that it is incredibly difficult to just get out of bed to use the bathroom or get a drink), it's days like this that I am truly thankful that I found the BetterYou B12 Boost spray as it's ingested through the veins in my mouth, it goes straight into my bloodstream rather than via the stomach where I can't digest it. 

Whilst this spray can be used by anyone to help combat fatigue and boost memory and concentration levels, it is exceptionally useful for people with any form of vitamin B12 deficiency including those who have a diet related deficiency. On my days when I really struggle or for example if my appointment gets moved by my doctors for someone's holiday injection (yes that has actually happened) and I am literally in my bed for days, this is super useful because it can mean the difference between me lying in bed all day having to crawl to go the bathroom and stock piling drinks next to me bed to be actually being able to get up, make myself plenty of food and drinks and get a small amount of things done.

For anyone reading please be sensitive with what and how you say something, when you say you're exhausted, please bear a thought for me. It is crushing to hear someone say they are 'too tired to function' when I literally am too tired to function in any human form and am considered 'just lazy'. Please be mindful when you see someone park with a disabled badge and then get out and walk, not every person has a physical disability! I have days when it can take me 10 minutes and the support of a friend/my mother to get across a small car park. If you don't take anything else away from this, please show some love and support for people with invisible/hidden illness, cause we are all around you and it takes some extremely strong people to go out and publicly it.   

Go out there and show some love!!!!

Speak to you soon!

*The BetterYou B12 Boost spray was sent for me to try out due to my b12 deficiency. All opinions are 100% honest and my own.
Danielle Levy

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