Iron Deficiency: My Story

Health-wise, 2015 has not been my year. I’ve been joking that I’d fulfilled my yearly quota of doctors appointments and hospital visits well before the year was halfway over, but the issue that has been getting me down the most has been my bout of severe iron deficiency.

Hemingway quote

Iron deficiency is very common with women, especially in their teens and twenties but I’d never had a problem with low iron counts in the past. Then around March, I suddenly began to feel extremely fatigued and just low on energy, no matter how much I slept. At the same time, my skin began to act up in places I never had issues with before such as my cheeks and forehead. Sure, I had suffered from hormonal breakouts around my chin before, but these blemishes were extremely persistent and in no relation to hormones. Finally, even my hair started getting extremely thin and limp, even more than usual.

That’s when I decided to see my physician, who initially put my physical ailments down to stress and anxiety. Nonetheless, she agreed to do a full blood count, which showed a virtually non-existent level of of iron.

Which leads me today. I’ve been taking prescription iron supplements for a good five months now and while I was hesitant and weary of the side-effects, my health has improved a huge amount almost right away. I feel more energized and my skin has bounced back pretty quickly. The only thing that is still a work in progress is my hair, which has slowly been growing back so I am now walking around with a perpetual halo of baby hairs that will hopefully soon fill in and bring my hair back to a normal state.

While my prescription is pretty full on and something that can be hard on the system, I am so glad I feel better. We are not sure yet what caused this sudden drop in iron levels, but the most serious causes have luckily been ruled out.

The moral of this long-winded story, if there is one, is to take good care of your health, and, if your female and around my age group, make sure to keep and eye on those iron levels, as they can impact your all around health quite severely. There are over the counter supplements out there that are far less hardcore than what I am taking, but be sure to consult your doctor first and pinpoint the issue.

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