37 Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency have become an increasing concern these days. The biggest reason for this is the increase in people switching to vegan and vegetarian diets.

Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

4% of women of ages 40-49 have Vitamin B12 deficiency.

This problem occurs due to the lack of animal products like dairy, shellfish, eggs, and meat, in their diet.

Unfortunately, the symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency don’t show themselves until the deficiency becomes severe.

When the deficiency is mild, the symptoms often resemble those of other medical problems and are often misdiagnosed. The best way to confirm if you are B12 deficient is to do a Vitamin B12 deficiency urine test.

12 Mild Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms:

Here are 12 symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency in mild cases:

1) Pale Complexion

Vitamin B12 deficiency can result in a pale complexion due to the deficiency affecting DNA synthesis and blood formation.

Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency Include Pale Complexion

2) Listlessness

The deficiency results in reduced energy production, causing you to feel listless and lethargic.

3) Nervous Or Tense Feeling

You may have the deficiency if you experience an increased sense of nervousness and tense feeling for no particular reason.

4) Weakened Immune System

A deficiency in this vitamin can result in a weaker immune system and increased chances of catching illnesses and diseases.

5) Feeling Tired And Fatigued

If you are feeling tired and fatigued all the time, this may be due to a B12 deficiency.

6) Inflammations

A B12 Deficiency can cause swelling or inflammation of the intestines, stomach, or mouth.

7) Irritability

The imbalance in hormone levels and weakened nerves can cause irritability in those who are B12 deficient.

8) Finding It Difficult To Focus And Concentrate

Reduction in neurotransmitter production due to B12 deficiency can result in a negative impact on mental health, focus and concentration.

9) Mood Swings

Those who have a vitamin deficiency can expect to have mild mood swings resulting from the previously mentioned nervousness.

10) Mouth With Cracks At The Corners

Angular Cheilitis is caused due to vitamin deficiency that results in cracking of the corners of the mouth.

11) Weakness

Other than feeling listless and having low energy levels, you can expect physical weakness to be a B12 deficiency symptom.

12) Loss Of Appetite

A lack of hunger or desire to eat is also a known symptom of the deficiency.

Here are a few important points regarding Vitamin B12 Deficiency:
  • The MMA urine test is the preferred way to diagnose Vitamin B12 Deficiency
  • Symptoms are often less noticeable earlier and get worse over time
  • The commonly found symptoms often result in incorrect diagnoses
  • The most effective way to counter the deficiency is with natural B12 supplements

Severe Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms:

Now that you have seen the symptoms of mild Vitamin B12 deficiency, here are 25 symptoms of a severe deficiency:

13) Feeling Numbness, Cold, And Tingling Sensation

When blood production is severely affected, it can cause numbness, cold and tingling sensation in the body.

14) Disorientation

The lack of red blood cells in your blood may result in disorientation in some people.

15) Difficulty Sleeping

The imbalance in neurotransmitter and hormone level can result in difficulty sleeping, trying you out further.

16) Intestinal Damage

The reduced red blood production and weakened immune system lead to intestinal damage that can lead to further problems.

17) Spasticity

The negative impact of the deficiency on the central nervous system and nerve production can lead to spasticity.

18) Dizziness And Fainting

If you are feeling dizzy, it may be because of this vitamin deficiency. The dizziness can also cause you to faint if you overexert yourself.

19) Hallucination

Insufficient oxygen-rich blood being delivered to the brain can result in reduced mental function. It can also cause hallucinations in severe cases.

20) Arteriosclerosis

The lack of Vitamin B12 in your diet can affect your heart, thickening and hardening its artery walls.

21) Infertility

Vitamin B12 deficiency has been linked to early fetal loss and infertility due to hormone imbalance caused.

22) Anemia

The reduced blood levels can turn severe, transforming into Pernicious Anemia.

23) Poor Coordination

Difficulty with coordination, fine motor skills, and an unsteady gait are some of the more severe signs of this deficiency.

24) Apathy

Apathy is a major problem for those who are deficient in Vitamin B12. It causes you not to be interested or enthusiastic about anything.

25) Personality Disorder

The mood swings in the mild symptoms section become personality disorders due to the changes in brain neurotransmitter levels.

26) Depression

Mental health gets deteriorated with Vitamin B12 deficiency as hormone and neurotransmitter levels are altered and imbalanced, resulting in depression.

27) Anxiety

Anxiety is another severe psychological symptom of this deficiency which was nervousness when the condition was milder.

28) Dementia

Studies have shown that mental health issues like Dementia to be linked to Vitamin B12 Deficiency.

29) Incontinence

A deficiency in Vitamin B12 can result in difficulty or lack of control in urination or defecation.

30) Psychosis

Severe cases of Vitamin B12 deficiency can result in mental problems like Psychosis where patients lose connection with reality.

31) Muscle Tremors

The effect of low levels of red blood cells in the blood can affect muscle contractions, resulting in muscle tremors.

32) Memory Problem

An imbalance in hormone levels can result in a severe deficiency in memory retention and recollection.

33) Nerve Damage

Severe Vitamin B12 Deficiency can affect the central nervous system, damaging the nerves in the process.

34) Heart Attack

B12 deficiency has caused many vegetarians to experience heart attacks with an increase in the risk of heart problems.

35) Paralysis

According to the experts, Vitamin B12 deficiency causes anemia and spinal cord degeneration. This can result in damage to the spinal cord and paralysis.

36) Stroke

Being B12 deficient increases the risk of stroke due to increased plasma homocysteine levels.

37) Affects Vision

The deficiency affects the central nervous system and the optic nerves in your eyes. This can damage the retina and impact your vision.

Final Word On Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency:

In this article, we went through the 37 symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency. This should have helped you be better equipped in dealing with this problem.

In fact, the solution for this is simple to take Vitamin B12 supplements.

But if you have a severe case of vitamin deficiency, talk to your doctor or medical practitioner. They usually prescribe Hydroxocobalamin injections or pills to raise B12 levels quickly.

For less severe or mild cases, supplements found online or in-store (OTCs) are generally sufficient.

About Jessica J, M.D

Written & reviewed by Dr. Jessica J. Follow me on Pinterest & LinkedIn.