Vitamin D is one of the important vitamins of our body. It should be present in the body in sufficient amount. If it does not meet your daily requirement of vitamin D per day and if there is lack of vitamin D in your body, then it can result in diseases.
Following are the effects of lack of vitamin D on your body. Rickets and osteomalacia are important diseases that can occur due to vitamin D deficiency. Rickets is observed in young children between the age group of 6 months to 2 years.
Vitamin D helps in absorption of calcium and phosphorus from the body. So its deficiency causes reduced calcification of growing bones. There is growth failure, muscular hypotonia and tetany and convulsions due to reduce blood calcium levels. There is loss of tone of muscles.
Bony deformities like curved legs, deformed pelvis occur. Other deformities like harrison’s sulcus, rickety rosary, kyphoscoliosis occur. In harrison’s sulcus, there is depression at the lower edge of the thorax. The lower chest is drawn in and the margin of last rib is prominent.
In rickety rosary, there are bead like prominences seen at the junction of ribs and cartilages. Kyphoscoliosis refers to bending of the vertebral column. The milestones of development like walking, teething are delayed. So child learns walking at much slower pace.
When vitamin D deficiency occurs in adults, it results in osteomalacia. This is usually seen in women during pregnancy and lactation when vitamin D requirement is increased. There are pains felt in different body parts. These are bone pains and are dull aching in nature, shifting from one part to other.
Usual locations of pain are hips, lower back and legs. Also muscle ache and chronic fatigue are other symptoms of osteomalacia. Bones usually fracture on weight bearing and high pressure in severe cases of osteomalacia.
Increasing intake of vitamin D and calcium is the treatment for these diseases. Parents are advised to expose their children regularly to sunshine. Periodic dosing of young children with vitamin D is necessary. Intake of fish liver oils, egg yolk, butter, cheese, milk and milk products, green leafy vegetables should be increased.