Vitamin A deficiency or VAD is seldom seen with people who live in the developed countries. This is because the governments of these countries have taken enough precautions and provide fortified foods to the people to overcome this problem. The people living in these countries are also knowledgeable enough to take adequate precautions. People in the developing and third world countries have to contend with VAD. The governments are either ill-equipped to deal with it or they just are inefficient. It is proven that VAD is reversible and people can recover if it is identified in the beginning stages and proper medication is given. Here are some of the symptoms that pertain to Vitamin A deficiency:
- Blurred vision/night blindness: Rhodopsin is an eye pigment that is responsible for vision in dim or low light. Its development is linked to the availability of vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A deficiency causes this pigment to stagnate and wither away. The early symptom of this process is the blurring of vision in low light. If people find it increasingly difficult to spot objects in low light, it has to be because of this pigment. Early detection and prescribed dosage of vitamin A can gradually improve the vision and eventually restore it to normalcy. Lack of proper treatment will definitely lead to permanent blindness and sometimes even death.
- Lack of Immunity: This is a generic symptom that can often be mistaken for other malaises. Vitamin A deficiency affects the immune system of the body and renders in ineffective against infections and diseases.Apart from regular bouts of common communicable infections, people with VAD also have occurrences and relapses of more dangerous diseases. This is the second most visible symptom of vitamin A deficiency. People with recurring bouts of diseases need to check themselves for VAD and take corrective actions immediately.
- Respiratory and Diarrheal infections: People with VAD are prone to respiratory problems and frequent infections. This can be easily identified in children but difficult to determine with adults.The causes for diarrhea are varied and it is difficult to determine the cause as VAD but coupled with respiratory problems, it surely points out to vitamin A deficiency.Vitamin A deficiency can be easily cured and the patients can recover completely, if the deficiency is detected in the early stages and prompt remedial actions are taken. If neglected, this can even prove fatal.