Vitamin B12 is a crucial ingredient for the proper functioning of the body, as it is needed to make red blood cells. The signs of a deficiency can develop very slowly, but there are two major warning signs on your face, including facial neuralgia and jaundice.
Facial pain or neuralgia is a warning sign of low levels of B12 to watch for in the face, according to The Thyroid Patient Advocacy.
He continued, “Pain is usually felt on only one side of the face at a time.
“This pain varies so much that it would be difficult to describe all the possibilities.
“It can be a dull ache in the cheekbone just under one eye.
“It can also be a sharp, stabbing pain in the forehead, sometimes moving down from the scalp to the edge of the nose near the eye.
“It can be excruciating but is usually fleeting.”
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A study published in MD Edge Neurology found that vitamin B12 deficiency can cause isolated facial neuralgia with feelings of decreased touch and pain, as well as numbness on the affected side.
“It was somewhat unexpected that a vitamin B12 deficiency could cause isolated facial neuralgia,” said neurologist Dr Jitendra Baruah.
He continued, “The treatment of facial neuralgia is sometimes very difficult and patients can often undergo multimodal treatment without much success.”
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Those who do not have B12 may also notice that their face color is more yellow.
The whites of the eyes may also appear less white and more yellow.
The reason for this change in color of the face is due to the fact that the production of red blood cells in the body is affected.
When the body lacks vitamin B12, it is not able to make red blood cells as easy.
People with vitamin B12 deficiency often look pale or have a slight yellow tinge to the skin and whites of their eyes, a condition known as jaundice.
This happens when a lack of vitamin B12 causes problems with your body’s production of red blood cells.
Due to the low levels of healthy red blood cells, leading to a type of anemia called pernicious anemia.
Symptoms of pernicious anemia can include diarrhea, loss of appetite, and jaundice.
How should I react to these symptoms?
You should see a GP if you have symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, according to the NHS.
“These conditions can often be diagnosed based on your symptoms and the results of a blood test,” the health organization explains.
It is doubly important that vitamin B12 deficiency is diagnosed and treated as quickly as possible.
“Although many symptoms improve with treatment, some problems caused by the disease can be irreversible if left untreated,” warns the NHS.