What is dehydration?
Dehydration occurs due to the extreme fluid loss from the body. It happens when you are losing more fluids than you are consuming. Hence, your body does not have enough fluids to function properly. It can cause a serious problem if left untreated.
How bad is my dehydration?
Mild: It causes dry mouth and low skin rigidity. You may feel thirsty more often. Other symptoms are fatigue, dark yellow and strong-smelling pee.
Moderate: It involves muscle cramps, headache and dry skin. The frequency of peeing is fewer than three to four times a day. You may also have dry lips and eyes.
Severe: You may experience rapid or weak pulse, rapid breathing, lack of energy, dizziness that does not go away, confusion and fainting. It requires urgent hospitalization under your doctor’s supervision.
How to manage mild dehydration?
- Drink enough water every day. Each person’s needs can be different, so ask your health care provider how much you should be drinking each day.
- If you are exercising in the heat and losing a lot of minerals in sweat, sports drinks can be helpful
- Avoid drinks that have sugar and caffeine.
- Drink extra fluids when the weather is hot or when you are sick.
How to manage moderate to severe dehydration?
Get medical help right away if you
- Had Diarrhea (Loose stools) for 24 hours or more.
- Are irritable or disoriented and much sleepier or less active than usual.
- Can’t keep down fluids.
- Have bloody or black stool.
What are the causes?
You can become dehydrated because of
- Cancer treatments (chemotherapy, radiation, surgery)
- Vomiting (Emesis)
- Excessive sweating
- Excessive urination due to certain medicines and illnesses
- Inadequate liquid intake
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