Picture this: It’s a hot summer day and you’ve been in the sun all day. Suddenly your mouth gets dry and you begin to feel fatigued and dizzy. You’re dehydrated. About one-half million people are hospitalized in the United States for it yearly, and roughly 10,000 die in the hospital, according to research. While the weather may have contributed to your dehydration, dehydration can occur regardless of the weather or how active you are. If you are experiencing dehydration, there may be something more serious going on with your health.
Signs and Symptoms of Dehydration
Most people who show up in an emergency room due to dehydration are experiencing three telltale symptoms: fatigue, dizziness and headaches. However, there are other symptoms you should pay attention to:
- Feeling thirsty
- Muscle cramps
- Urinating less often than normal
- Dark-colored urine
- Dry skin
- Feeling tired or lethargic
What causes dehydration?
Dehydration happens when your body loses more fluid and electrolytes than it is taking in and you don’t have enough left for your body to function normally, Everyday Health notes.
Dehydration can happen to anyone, however, the following groups are at a higher risk:
- Infants and Children
- Older Adults
- People With Chronic Illnesses
- People With Stomach Viruses or the Flu
- People Who Drink Alcohol
- People on Low-Sodium Diets
- Women Who Are Breastfeeding
Is diabetes causing your dehydration?
Dehydration is also very common in people with diabetes and can be an early sign that your blood sugar, or glucose may be high.
People with diabetes are more likely to become dehydrated by:
1. Not drinking enough water
If your blood sugar is high, it makes you urinate more. Without water to compensate for the fluids you are losing, you will become dehydrated. This means you may have to drink more water than the average person to replace it.
2. Exercising intensely
Exercise is important if you are living with diabetes, however, you should be mindful. Moderate exercise can lower your blood sugar, when you push yourself hard. As a result, your muscles can’t use insulin (the substance that moves glucose from your bloodstream into your cells) as efficiently, research notes.
3. Being out in hot, humid weather
Hot, humid weather poses the threat of dehydration for anyone, including those with diabetes. When the sweat can’t evaporate due to