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There is more to dehydration than just being very thirsty. When your body doesn’t get enough water, it cannot function properly. When you become dehydrated, it can be mild or severe. It all depends on how much fluid is missing from your body. It is normal to lose water throughout the day. It can happen when you sweat, when you cry, when you go to the bathroom, and even when you breathe. There are certain situations where you can lose too much water, and it can become a hazard to your health.
- Diarrhea: When you have diarrhea, your intestinal tract cannot absorb water from the foods that you eat. Over time, this can result in severe dehydration.
- Vomiting: If you have the flu or food poisoning, excessive vomiting can make it impossible to keep food and liquids down. This can quickly result in dehydration.
- Excessive sweating: If you are sweating excessively, whether it be due to a fever, intense exercise, or being out in the hot sun, you can lose more water from your body than you can put in. This can quickly result in dehydration.
- Frequent urination: There are certain drugs that can cause you to urinate frequently. Drinking an excessive amount of alcohol can also cause you to urinate excessively. This can cause you to become seriously dehydrated.
Signs of Mild Dehydration
If you become mildly dehydrated, you will experience a few minor symptoms. These symptoms include:
- A dry mouth
- Dark, yellow urine
- Dry skin
- A mild headache
- Muscle cramps
Signs of Severe Dehydration
The signs of severe hydration are more noticeable. These are signs that your body is becoming dangerously low on fluids and if you don’t replenish the water in your body soon, your health could be in jeopardy. Signs of severe dehydration include:
- No need to urinate
- Dark, yellow urine
- Rapid breathing
- Elevated heart rate
- Sunken eyes
- Lack of energy
- Tiring very easily
- Loss of consciousness
- Low blood pressure
Treatment For Dehydration
The treatment for dehydration would depend on how dehydrated you are. If you are experiencing symptoms of mild dehydration, you would just need to sit down in a cool area and drink water. It can take drinking two quarts of water over a period of two to four hours to replenish the fluids that you have lost.
If you are suffering from symptoms of severe dehydration, you may need to seek medical assistance. In severe cases, you may not be able to get the amount of water that you need in your body fast enough by drinking alone. In severe cases, you should go to the hospital where you would be given IV fluids for several hours until you have replenished the water in your body.
How To Prevent Dehydration
Preventing dehydration is much safer than becoming dehydrated and then needing to treat it. There are several ways that you can prevent dehydration.
- Try to drink 8 to 10 glasses of water each day. This will keep hydrated.
- If you are vomiting, have a fever, or if you have diarrhea that lasts for longer than a day or two, seek medical attention. You may need IV fluids to keep from becoming dehydrated.
- If you are going to be outside in the hot sun, bring along enough water. Try to drink 10 ounces of water every 30 minutes.
- Drink water while you are exercising.
Dehydration can be very dangerous and in some cases, deadly. It is important to know the signs of dehydration and what you should do if you beleive that you are becoming dehydrated.