While it can happen at any time, dehydration – not having enough fluid in your body – occurs more often when temperatures increase during the summer months. As much of the nation gets ready to enter its hottest time of the year, the experts at NurseWise, a national multilingual nurse triage and health education provider, are pleased to share information about dehydration and who’s most at risk.
“Most people don’t realize they are dehydrated until it’s too late,” says Kim Tuck, RN, President and Chief Executive Officer of NurseWise. “Both our bodies and minds need fluids to properly function. When fluid levels become too low, some of the first symptoms you may experience are cramps, dizziness, headache, vomiting or disorientation. To stay hydrated, drink plenty of liquids every day, particularly if it’s hot outside.”
Symptoms of Dehydration in Adults
The signs and symptoms of dehydration range from minor to severe and include:
> Increased thirst
> Dry mouth and swollen tongue
> Palpitations (feeling that the heart is jumping or pounding)
> Inability to sweat
> Decreased urine output
> Urine color may indicate dehydration.
If your urine is concentrated and deeply yellow or amber, you may be dehydrated.
The following groups are at an increased risk for dehydration. If this includes you or someone you care for, fill up on fluids for optimal health!
Little ones are the most susceptible to dehydration. The smaller you are, the more quickly you sweat out water and important minerals like electrolytes.
Infants and children also are more prone to diarrhea and vomiting, which can cause the body to lose liquids more quickly.
Some symptoms to look for are a child who seems less active than normal, hasn’t had a wet diaper for three hours or more, or doesn’t have tears when crying.
2. Aged adults
The older we get, the more difficult it is for our bodies to store fluids and adapt to changes in temperature.
We also tend to take more medications and eat less as we age, which increases the risk of