You probably already know that being dehydrated means your body doesn’t have enough water to function in a healthy manner - but do you know how easily the body loses water? Sweating, bathroom breaks, and breathing are all examples of how the body may lose water. If that water isn’t replenished, you become dehydrated, which can mildly or even severely affect your body, organs, and health.
What are the Symptoms of Dehydration?
There are a couple different stages of dehydration, and each present with various symptoms. Mild or moderate dehydration, for example, can cause and lead to:
- Increased thirst
- Dry mouth
- An inability to sweat
- Darker-colored urine
- Muscle cramps
When we are mildly or even moderately dehydrated, drinking water and resting is enough to correct the problem without medical intervention. Once you’ve begun to experience the following symptoms, though, things could escalate and become more serious:
- Weakness or sluggishness
- Rapid heartbeat
If your body is experiencing the signs of more severe dehydration, it’s best to contact a doctor promptly.
How Do You Prevent Dehydration?
Since the weather is steadily warming up, it’s important to start taking precautions to prevent dehydration. You can avoid this health issue by doing the following:
- Drink plenty of fluids. The easiest way to prevent dehydration on a daily basis is to get into a habit of drinking water, even when you feel fine or are indoors. Follow professional recommendations on how much water your body needs, and don’t hesitate to discuss these requirements with your doctor.
- Plan ahead. If you’re going to be outdoors for an extended period of time, be sure to bring extra water. Even if it’s not hot enough to be sweating profusely, your body will still lose fluids throughout the day!
- Avoid alcohol overconsumption. Not only does drinking alcohol aid in dehydrating you, but it also prevents you from noticing the earlier signs of dehydration. Be especially careful to avoid over consumption when it’s hot outside.
- Take care when you’re ill. Did you know that when your immune system is working extra hard, it requires additional water? This is especially true when the body is losing fluids through fever, diarrhea, vomiting, etc. So if you’re battling a spring or summer cold, have plenty of water on hand.
Though dehydration has the potential to become serious, it’s also very manageable and preventable! If, however, you have questions about your hydration goals or health in general, please make an appointment with one of Genesis Medical’s practices and staff. Working with our team to address your individual needs and questions will ensure that your summer is as healthy and safe as possible!