Health & Nutrition

Dehydration: Why Does It Happen?

10 facts about dehydration to beware of during these hot days

| 16.07.17 | 15:14
Dehydration: Why Does It Happen?
1. A lack of liquids in your body for any reason can cause dehydration. The body loses moisture through talking, breathing, sweating and daily activity.

2. Dehydration occurs when the body’s delicate balance is disrupted and the body loses liquids faster than it can replace them. The greater the lack of liquids in your body is, the greater the dehydration will be.  

3. Main causes for dehydration:
  • Not drinking enough.
  • Prolonged exposure to sun on a hot day.
  • Diarrhea and vomiting.
  • Sweating: sweat helps cool off the body and much water is lost from sweat. If the weather is hot and dry a person can dehydrate. If the weather is hot and moist he may not dehydrate as quick but may still suffer from heat stroke because the body can’t cool off from sweat that doesn’t evaporate.
  • Diabetes: High blood sugar cause the body to urinate more  and expel liquids from the body
  • Burns:  people with burns lose moisture as the burned tissue is still hot and the body tries to cool it off.
  • Medication: Many medications are diuretics which withdraw moisture from the body.
 
4. Signs of dehydration: headaches, dizziness, inability to concentrate, fatigue, not urinating, dry mouth, lips and tongue, flushed red cheeks, and fast pulse. In this situation a person should drink water until he is able to urinate and continue to drink throughout the day. Even slight dehydration should be avoided for prolonged slight dehydration males a person prone to urinary tract infections. If the dehydration intensifies a person will become more dizzy and nauseous, the eyes will feel dry in addition to his mouth and his pulse will speed up.

5. Pregnant Women: pregnant women can get dehydrated from an imbalance in salts and electrolytes in their body. This can cause harm to themselves and the baby. Hormonal imbalances can bring on early contractions and increase risk of premature birth.  Pregnant women should be vigilant in making sure they are always hydrated by drinking enough water which helps blood circulation. A woman who gets early contractions should go for treatment immediately.

6. Dehydration reduces body’s blood volume and can cause the body to divert the blood to the vital organs and systems and away from the extremities like the arms and legs. When the kidneys don’t get sufficient blood the person may vomit and lose more moisture that way.

7. How do we avoid dehydration? The best way is to drink a sufficient amount of water. Don’t rely on if you’re feeling thirsty or not rather drink every hour regardless of how you feel. Feeling thirst isn’t always as intense as feeling hungry so it isn’t always readily detected. Additionally a person can stop feeling thirsty from a small amount of drink when his body may still lack much more water. Therefore a person should not rely on if he’s feeling thirsty and drink without regard to his feeling thirsty or not.

8. An easy tip to prevent dehydration: Carry a water bottle everywhere you go. Don’t leave the house without a bottle in your bag even for a short excursion out of the house. Take small moments like waiting at a light or a bus to take a sip or two to keep hydrated.

9. Treating dehydration: When detecting symptoms of dehydration stop all activity, drink water and cool down to prevent losing more water. When a person is slightly dehydrated he can be treated at home and drink himself. The drink may be slightly sweetened and he should drink small amount initially to facilitate drinking if a person is somewhat nauseous. If a person is more seriously dehydrated he will need intravenous rehydration and should go to the hospital to do this.

10. It’s important to remember that the elderly and babies and children are in higher risk of dehydration and should be carefully watched and given sufficient drink to prevent dehydration.
 
 
 
 
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