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Today in Health & Wellness
HEALTH CONDITIONS

Dehydration

Overview
Symptoms
Risk Factors
Treatment and Management
Doctors to Consult
Overview

Dehydration is a depletion of body fluids that occurs when fluids are lost from the gastrointestinal tract, urinary tract and skin. The body requires a certain amount of fluid intake on a daily basis to function. Requirements vary with activity and age, but most active persons need two to three times this basic amount.

Basic fluid intake serves to replace the fluids which are required to perform our normal bodily functions. Taking in less or lose more fluid than is needed, will result in dehydration.

Symptoms
  • Dry or sticky mouth
  • Low or no urine output; concentrated urine appears dark yellow
  • Sunken eyes and markedly sunken fontanelles (the soft spot on the top of the head) in an infant
  • Lethargic or comatose (with severe dehydration)
Risk Factors
  • Fever, heat exposure, heat exhaustion, excessive sweating
  • Vomiting, diarrhea, and increased urination due to infection
  • Diseases such as diabetes
  • An impaired ability to drink (e.g., someone in a coma or on a respirator or a sick infant who cannot suck on a bottle are common examples)
  • No access to safe drinking water
  • Significant injuries to skin, such as burns or mouth sores, or severe skin diseases or infections (water is lost through the damaged skin)
Commonly Prescribed Drugs
Treatment and Management
  • Drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of fluids, such as water or rehydration drinks each day.
  • Do not drink coffee, colas, or other drinks that contain caffeine. They increase urine output and dehydrate the body faster.
  • Stop working outdoors or exercising when feeling dizzy, light-headed, or very tired.
  • Wear one layer of lightweight, light-colored clothing when working or exercising outdoors.
Home Remedies
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