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Last Updated: Aug 17, 2021
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All You Need to Know About Dehydration - Symptoms, Treatment And Causes

About Symptoms Cause Stages Risks Prevention Diagnose Cure Recovery Home Remedies Alternatives

What is Dehydration?

The body of the humans is made up of nearly 75 percent water. The body cannot survive without water. Water is present within the blood vessels, cells and the inner portion of the cells. To keep our water levels balanced we need a sophisticated water management system. Our mechanism for thirst gives us an indication that we need to improve the intake of the fluid. The water gets lost throughout the day when defecate, urinate, sweat, and breathe.

We can make up for the lost fluid by drinking a lot of water. The bodies of the humans have this capacity of moving the water to the part of the body where it requires it the most if dehydration starts to occur. The majority of the cases for dehydration can be easily reversed through improving the intake of the fluid, but a chronic case of dehydration needs immediate medical attention.

What is the First Sign of Dehydration?

The body of the humans is made up of nearly 75 percent water. The body cannot survive without water. Water is present within the blood vessels, cells and the inner portion of the cells. To keep our water levels balanced we need a sophisticated water management system. Our mechanism for thirst gives us an indication that we need to improve the intake of the fluid. The water gets lost throughout the day when defecate, urinate, sweat, and breathe. We can make up for the lost fluid by drinking a lot of water.

The bodies of the humans have this capacity of moving the water to the part of the body where it requires it the most if dehydration starts to occur. The majority of the cases for dehydration can be easily reversed through improving the intake of the fluid, but a chronic case of dehydration needs immediate medical attention.

Thirst can never be considered as a first sign of dehydration. Majority of the people, specifically the older people do not feel thirsty unless they are hydrated. Thus, improving the water intake during the condition of hot weather is necessary. Some of the signs and the symptoms of dehydration are

Infant

  • No tears when crying
  • No wet diapers
  • Dry mouth and tongue

Adult

  • Feeling extremely thirsty
  • Dark colored urine
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion

What Conditions Cause Dehydration?

If the symptoms worsen for the person suffering from the problem of dehydration then hospitalization is necessary. During the hospitalization a doctor can replenish the fluid loss by giving fluids intravenously.

  • Fever: Usually if the temperature is high the dehydration level of the person also increases. The problems gets worse if a person has diarrhoea along with fever.
  • Increased Urination: A person may be suffering from uncontrolled diabetes. There are some medicines also which can cause excess amount of water to be released from the body like blood pressure medicines and diuretics. These medicines increase the urine output of a person.
  • Excessive sweating: If a person is sweating he/she will lose a lot of water. If someone is doing strenuous activity and does not drink water after it, a person can become dehydrated. The weather also plays a vital role in the development of dehydration in the body.
  • Diarrhoea and vomiting: If a person suffers from vomiting and diarrhoea then he/she can lose huge amount of water from the body. The electrolyte level of the body will also fall in a short duration. The condition of a person worsens if both vomiting and diarrhoea occur together.

What are the stages of Dehydration?

Dehydration can be classified into six stages:

  1. Stage 1: Thirst.
  2. Stage 2: Fatigue.
  3. Stage 3: Dizziness, Dryness.
  4. Stage 4: Sunken eyes.
  5. Stage 5: Low blood pressure.
  6. Stage 6: Concentrated or no urine.

What can Dehydration lead to?

If Dehydration is not cured it can lead to severe health complications, such as:

  • Low blood volume, which can significantly reduce the amount of oxygen reaching organs and lower blood pressure.
  • Issues with kidneys such as stone, UTI, and in advanced cases Kidney failure.
  • Seizures, which are caused by an imbalance in electrolytes.
  • Issues with the heart such as cramps due to fatigue and even stroke.

What is the Best Way to Prevent Dehydration?

The most important treatment for dehydration is the prevention of the condition from occurring. Drinking plenty of fluids and eating foods and fruits with good water content can be a very good way to prevent dehydration. During extreme heat conditions, a person should be very cautious about doing activities that put stress on the body. If a person is exercising during the hot summer weather then he/she must take fluids properly to make up for the water lost during the exercise in the form of sweat. As children and elderly people have an increased risk of suffering from the condition of dehydration special attention is required to be given to them so that they take an adequate amount of fluids.

How to Diagnose Dehydration?

For diagnosing the condition of dehydration a doctor will examine both the mental and physical level of a person. An individual who is showing symptoms of low blood pressure, rapid heart beat inelastic skin, lack of sweat, and disorientation is a classic case of dehydration. A doctor may order a kidney function test for checking the levels of the electrolyte in the body. It is through electrolytes that hydration in the body is regulated and they also play a vital role in the muscle and nerve function. A doctor may also order a urine analysis as it may provide some vital details for confirming the diagnosis of diarrhoea.

What is the Fastest Way to Cure Dehydration?

For diagnosing the condition of dehydration a doctor will examine both the mental and physical levels of a person. An individual who is showing symptoms of low blood pressure, rapid heartbeat inelastic skin, lack of sweat, and disorientation is a classic case of dehydration. A doctor may order a kidney function test for checking the levels of the electrolyte in the body. Through electrolytes, hydration in the body is regulated and plays a vital role in muscle and nerve function. A doctor may also order a urine analysis as it may provide some vital details for confirming the diagnosis of diarrhea.

Some ways to cure Dehydration quickly are:

  • Drinking water is an obvious choice when dehydrated. It is usually enough to cure Dehydration, however, if there is salt loss as well, it is beneficial to have a balanced diet to replace both salt and water loss.
  • Coffee and tea when taken in excess can cause Dehydration but in moderation these help in curing Dehydration and reenergizing the body.
  • Oral hydration solutions help prevent and cure Dehydration.

How long does it take to rehydrate after Dehydration?

The time it takes for the body to rehydrate depends upon dehydrated the person is.

  • In the case of serious Dehydration, a person is usually hospitalized and put on IV to rehydrate the body, it typically takes about 24 hours for the body to gain the optimum fluid.
  • In less serious cases, Dehydration can be cured by oral rehydration solutions.

The body should not be loaded with a lot of amount of water when dehydrated as sudden fluid intake can lead to a form of shock.

What is the Remedies or Treatment for Dehydration at Home?

  • Drinking buttermilk is a very good option as it not only restores the electrolyte imbalance but it is also probiotic.

  • If a person is suffering from dehydration then he/she should consume bland foods like rice, banana, potatoes, and gelatin as they are easy to digest.
  • Eating fruits which are rich in water content like watermelons, strawberries, and cantaloupe can be very good for a person suffering from dehydration. Incorporating cucumbers in the diet can also be a good option.
  • Drinking barley water can be a very healthy option as it restores the body with various minerals, vitamins and antioxidants but it also helps in restoring the lost fluid.
  • The coconut water is a rich source of sodium and potassium which are often depleted if a person is suffering from dehydration.

What is the Best thing to Drink When You are Dehydrated?

  • Drinking buttermilk is a very good option as it not only restores the electrolyte imbalance but it is also probiotic.

  • Drinking barley water can be a very healthy option as it restores the body with various minerals, vitamins and antioxidants but it also helps in restoring the lost fluid.
  • The coconut water is a rich source of sodium and potassium which are often depleted if a person is suffering from dehydration.
  • Drinking barley water can be a very healthy option as it restores the body with various minerals, vitamins and antioxidants but it also helps in restoring the lost fluid.
  • The coconut water is a rich source of sodium and potassium which are often depleted if a person is suffering from dehydration.

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