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Posts Tagged ‘Getting enough vitamin B12’

Pain and Numbness from Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Monday, October 7th, 2013



If you suffer from pins and needles and painful burning or tingling in your hands and feet, then you may have vitamin B12 deficiency. There are many causes of chronic pain and numbness, most of them strongly linked to extremely low vitamin B12 levels or resulting  pernicious anemia.

Pain and Numbness from Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Getting enough vitamin B12?

Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient for your nervous system, but sometimes we don’t get enough, either because of diet or underlying health issues.

Eating a vegan diet devoid of B12-rich meats, fish, and cheese is one way of developing vitamin B12 deficiency, but it is also common in the elderly and people who have had gastrointestinal surgery such as gastric bypass.

Vitamin B12 deficiency can also occur with migraine, fibromyalgia, and other forms of chronic pain, as autoimmune history and gastrointestinal problems combine to further raise your chances for developing vitamin B12 deficiency and resulting nerve pain.

If you’re experiencing constant nerve pain and numbness, then you should consider vitamin B12 deficiency as a possible cause.

Vitamin B12 deficiency neuropathy

Neuropathy is any kind of nerve damage that causes intense pain and numbness. Diabetic neuropathy is one of the most common forms of nerve pain, but it can also occur as a result of vitamin B12 deficiency or, if prolonged, pernicious anemia.

Symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency neuropathy include:

  • Painful numbness and tingling in the extremities
  • Burning or itchy skin rashes
  • Sore burning tongue
  • Difficulty controlling arm and leg movements
  • Muscle spasms

Vitamin B12 and your nerves

Vitamin B12 protects your nervous system by sustaining myelin, a fatty substance that insulates your nerve fibers and enhances intercellular communication, so that sensory messages travel along the spinal cord to the brain quickly and efficiently.

When vitamin B12 levels become depleted, you suffer symptoms resulting from demyelination, destruction of the nerve cell’s outer coating. This is the same process that occurs in patients of multiple sclerosis (MS).

Nervous impulses become slower, and symptoms of tingling, burning, pain and numbness from vitamin B12 deficiency become more frequent.

Untreated, vitamin B12 deficiency can impair your nervous system and cause severe handicaps.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)


Vitamin B12 deficiency is often comorbid with diabetes. Diabetics taking metformin are at a high risk for developing vitamin B12 deficiency, as metformin is one of several drugs that prevent absorption of vitamin B12 from foods.

If you are a diabetic using metformin, then it’s crucial sustain vitamin B12 levels through supplementation.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Fibromyalgia Pain Types

Vitamin B12 deficiency is harder to diagnose in people with diabetes, as the symptoms of pain and numbness are already masked by preexisting diabetic neuropathy. Routine vitamin B12 blood tests are recommended for all diabetics using metformin.

Treating nerve pain and numbness

If nerve pain results from vitamin B12 deficiency, then it’s important to boost your intake of vitamin B12 immediately.

The best, most digestible sources of vitamin B12 are non-dietary supplements that are absorbed into your bloodstream, as opposed to vitamin B12 pills that you swallow.

For best results, start out with 1,000mcg of vitamin B12 weekly or more often, as needed or recommended by your doctor.

Your doctor may prescribe antidepressants for neuropathic pain, or he may advise anti-convulsant drugs. All of these, over extended periods of time, may result in uncomfortable side effects, so use with caution.

Topical treatments used to relive arthritis may help to relieve nerve pain, without any harmful side effects.

Your turn!

If you suffer nerve pain and numbness, have you been tested for vitamin B12 deficiency?

Do you have any questions or suggestions?  Please leave your comments below.

Share with your friends!

If you found this article helpful, then please share with your friends, family, and coworkers by email, twitter, or Facebook.

Like this? Read more:

Do-It-Yourself Chronic Pain Management- 6 Helpful Tips

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What are the Symptoms of Pernicious Anemia- B12 deficiency?

Image courtesy of marin/freedigitalphotos

Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Tinnitus

Monday, September 2nd, 2013



Are your ears ringing?  For many, vitamin B12 deficiency is a cause of tinnitus symptoms; constant sounds in your ears like ringing, beeping, humming, buzzing, or rushing sounds may indicate a need for more vitamin B12. In fact, millions of people in the United States suffer from vitamin B12 deficiency and tinnitus.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Tinnitus

The following is a partial list of natural elements that may help with tinnitus and provide many other healthful benefits.

Why you need Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is a water soluble vitamin. It plays an important role in the formation of red blood cells and metabolism of sugars, fats and proteins. It is also helps maintain a healthy nervous system, and some research studies found it beneficial for patients of tinnitus, especially when this condition is associated with vitamin B12 deficiency.

40 Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency: the Ultimate Checklist

Tinnitus and vitamin B12

Tinnitus sufferers should test for a Vitamin B12 deficiency. It has been found that B12 deficiency has been linked with chronic tinnitus and noise- induced hearing loss.

In a study published in the March 1993 issue of “American Journal of Otolaryngology,” researchers evaluated over 100 subjects exposed to noise; 47 of the subjects who were diagnosed with tinnitus had vitamin B12 deficiency as well, many of which reported positive results after taking B12 supplements routinely

Getting enough vitamin B12

If you think you may require Vitamin B12 for tinnitus symptoms, ask your doctor to conduct a vitamin B12 blood screening test.

Consult a qualified health care professional to find out the root cause of your condition and whether or not you have a Vitamin B12 deficiency.

Vitamin B12 is safe to use without a prescription, as there are no FDA upper limits imposed on vitamin B12 supplementation.

Vitamin B12- How Long Before I See Results?

What is Tinnitus?

Tinnitus is a neurological disorder that causes you to hear constant noises in your ears that don’t exist in your parameter. With tinnitus, your brain picks up false noise signals from the nerve cells of your inner ear, resulting in persistent buzzing, ringing, whooshing, whistling or other annoying sounds in one or both ears.

There are many causes of tinnitus, including:

  • Severe vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Loud noise from music concerts
  • Being around noisy machinery for extended periods of time
  • Medicines known as “ototoxic” drugs
  • Tumors
  • Allergies
  • Frequent ear infections
  • Hypertension or hypotension

Your turn!

If you suffer from tinnitus, have you tested for vitamin B12 deficiency?

Do you have any questions or suggestions?  Please leave your comments below.

Share with your friends!

If you found this article helpful, then please share with your friends, family, and coworkers by email, twitter, or Facebook.

Like this? Read more:

Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency a Crisis?

Pernicious Anemia and Vitamin B12 Deficiency: Which Causes Which?

Image courtesy of stockimages/freedigitalphotos

Am I Getting Enough Vitamin B12?

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012



Do you know if you’re getting enough vitamin B12? Blood tests for vitamin B12 deficiency often don’t produce adequate results. And the USRDA standard for vitamin B12 isn’t enough to treat symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, like fatigue, memory loss, and anxiety.


Am I getting enough vitamin B12?

Getting enough vitamin B12 into your system can be tricky…

If you eat plenty of animal-based foods like beef liver, salmon, and clams, then you’re off to a good start.

However, for a large number of people who eat meat and fish, vitamin B12 just isn’t making it into the bloodstream.

Factors such as autoimmune disorders, gastritis, diabetes, and gastric bypass operations inhibit your ability to absorb vitamin B12.

As a result, you only receive about 1% of the vitamin B12 you get from food. Unfortunately, it’s not enough to prevent ultimate vitamin B12 deficiency.

Which you don’t want to get, as vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms include:

  • Chronic fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Memory loss
  • Dementia
  • Paranoia
  • Depression
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Hallucinations
  • Painful tingling in the hands and feet
  • Partial numbness
  • Tremors
  • Disability

How can I get more vitamin B12?

If your doctor believes you have vitamin B12 deficiency, he will probably prescribe routine rounds of vitamin B12 shots. These can be weekly or monthly installments of vitamin B12, according to your doctor’s recommendation.

While getting prescription vitamin B12 shots are helpful, many healthcare providers are reluctant to administer enough vitamin B12 to provide lasting relief from fatigue, chronic pain, and other symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency.

As a result, many sufferers of pernicious anemia (or other forms of vitamin B12 deficiency) end up relying on over-the-counter (OTC) supplements to “top off” their vitamin B12 levels.

  • Sublingual vitamin B12 tablets that dissolve under your tongue are popular, if not effective, methods of supplementing with cobalamin.  Many people also report tongue irritation or “burning” sensations from frequent use.
  • Vitamin B12 pills are useless for most people with vitamin B12 deficiency, as they are unable to digest vitamin B12 in the stomach, due to lack of the intrinsic factor enzyme.

Please tell us…

Do you take vitamin B12 for energy? If so, what type of vitamin B12 do you currently use?

Do you have any questions or suggestions?  Please leave your comments below.

Share with your friends!

If you found this article helpful, then please share with your friends, family, and coworkers by email, Facebook, or Google+.

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