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Women's Health

Possibly anemic?

09/02/2011

Question:

I can`t really find the right category for this... But anyway, I`m a little worried I might be anemic. My dad has been when he was my age (13). I don`t eat a ton of red meat nor do I take vitamins... my periods are really heavy and I`m always really cold. I also have a hard time paying attention I have a lot of headaches too. And recently when I`m about to fall asleep it feels as if there`s an earthquake but my body isn`t physically shaking... It just feels like it. It`s hard for me to breathe sometimes too... I have no idea what`s wrong with me or if I should bother my mom with it.

Answer:

Glad you asked. You probably are anemic, but you need to see your health care provider to have blood tests done, to see what kind of anemia you might have. It may be due to the heavy periods.  Meanwhile, start keeping a "diary" about your periods: write down exactly how long they last, how many pads or tampons you use, and what size the pads/tampons are.  Take this diary when you see your provider, so that she or he can get an idea of what you are experiencing. But see your provider soon. Good luck.

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Response by:

Linda A Bernhard, PhD, RN Linda A Bernhard, PhD, RN
Associate Professor Emeritus
College of Nursing
The Ohio State University