Signs of Dehydration
Disclaimer: I am not a health care professional. Please seek the advice of your doctor before you change your diet, exercise program, or make any other lifestyle changes.
Why is Water so Important?
The medical definition of dehydration is when the body loses more fluid than it takes in. If the lost fluid is not replaced, dehydration occurs. Keeping yourself hydration is of the utmost importance. However, in a warm climate, it is even more important since more of the body’s moisture is expelled by sweat. It is necessary for our bodies to sweat when we become heated. Sweating is actually a cooling system for our bodies and is especially essential when in a warm climate. There are three ways the body loses moisture; sweating, urinating and bowel movements, and through the moisture in the breath as one exhales.
“According to Dr. Jeffrey Utz, Neuroscience, pediatrics, Allegheny University, different people have different percentages of their bodies made up of water. Babies have the most, being born at about 78%. By one year of age, that amount drops to about 65%. In adult men, about 60% of their bodies are water. However, fat tissue does not have as much water as lean tissue. In adult women, fat makes up more of the body than men, so they have about 55% of their bodies made of water.” Most of the water in the human body is found in the cells. There are also water molecules in the blood vessels. In order for the body to function properly, water that is lost must be replaced.
Dangers of Dehydration
If your body isn’t properly hydrated, it can suffer in many ways. The kidneys usually shut down. A person can go into shock causing the other vital organs to begin to fail. It is possible that the person will eventually become confused, disoriented and at worst, slip into a coma. Because water is required to balance the electrolytes in the body, when one is dehydrated, the potassium level drops causing heart arrhythmia or seizures.
If any of the previously mentioned dangers are suspect, contact emergency medical professionals as soon as possible.
How do you Know When you are Dehydrated?
Thirst is the first sign. If you become thirsty your body is telling you it needs water. Also, if any of the following symptoms occur, definitely drink more water:
- Your eyes stop making tears
- You stop sweating in a warm climate
- You have heart palpitations
- Your urine becomes less in amount and frequency and is more yellow in color
- You feel chills or cold in a warm climate
- You feel weakness or dizziness
- You develop a headache along with any other symptom
- You experience muscle cramps
- You develop dry mouth
- Your skin loses its elasticity. You can tell by making an imprint with your finger and waiting to see if the imprint fills back in quickly. If it doesn’t, you need to drink.
When in the process of rehydrating, be sure to do it slowly. Have plenty of water available, and slowly sip on it until you begin feeling better.
Water is Life
- Dehydration Symptoms, Treatment, Reaction - MedicineNet
Read about dehydration in children, adults, symptoms (thirst, dry mouth, dark urine), causes (vomiting, diarrhea), and treatment options.
- Dehydration - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A brief definition of dehydration.
- Water properties: The water in you (Water Science for Schools)
Water properties: The water in you. From USGS's Water Science for Schools water site.
How Much Do You Drink?
How many ounces of water do you drink per day?
Be Happy! Be Healthy!
Tips to Stay Hydrated
- Use a straw when you drink
- Drink 1 cup (8 ounces) before each meal and first thing in the morning
- Have water with meals instead of tea, soda, or juice
- Keep a glass of water at your bedside to drink in the event you wake up thirsty during the night
- Carry a water container with you to work, shopping, or anywhere you go and sip on it
It is recommended that the average adult human drink 64 to 92 ounces of plain water a day. The amount varies depending on climate, activity, weight, age, and medical history. In addition to the recommended amount of water, other fluids like coffee, tea, soda, and juice may be consumed as well.
Thank you for reading my article. I hope you found it useful and educational. Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.
"Be kind to one another" ~ Ellen
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