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Understanding Your Risk Factors for Dehydration

Understanding Your Risk Factors for Dehydration

When you're thirsty, your brain indicates that you need more water. Your brain works this way when it senses you're losing more fluid than you're drinking, which can lead to dehydration.

Many circumstances lead to dehydration, which is why Dr. Timothy Scott Beck and the team at Life Point Medical offer IV hydration treatments. If you suffer from dry skin or dehydration from a long weekend of drinking, Dr. Beck provides you with the fluids you need for a speedy recovery.

What is dehydration?

Dehydration is a condition that happens when you lose more water than you drink. You're constantly losing water throughout the day through both sweat and urination.

Typically, you replenish your water supply through drinking liquids. However, dehydration can sneak up on you quickly if you're not careful, leading to uncomfortable symptoms.

More than just drinking enough water throughout the day can dehydrate you. You're also at risk for dehydration when you sweat excessively, such as while playing sports on a hot summer day.

Some medical issues also increase your risk for dehydration, including any condition that causes you to vomit or have diarrhea. You lose a significant amount of fluid through vomiting and diarrhea, and it's often hard to replace when you're sick.

Signs and symptoms of dehydration

You can have minor dehydration, which causes discomfort, or severe dehydration, which can be life-threatening. Knowing the signs and symptoms of dehydration is crucial to staying healthy.

The common signs and symptoms of mild to moderate dehydration include the following:

As dehydration progresses, the symptoms become more severe. You may be severely dehydrated if you can't sweat anymore, your blood pressure is low, or you have a fast heart rate.

Dark urine, sunken eyes, and extreme thirst are other severe signs of dehydration that you shouldn't ignore.

Are you at risk for dehydration?

Anyone can become dehydrated, especially if you need to track how much fluid you take in each day. However, some people are more susceptible to dehydration than others. The following are important risk factors for dehydration:

Older adults

When you're older, you often have chronic medical conditions that can affect your body fluids. You're also less likely to know you're thirsty, resulting in less water intake throughout the day.

Infants or children

Young children and infants don’t know when they lose more fluids than they take in. This age group is especially at risk for vomiting and diarrhea, as it's often difficult to get them to drink when they don't feel well.

Chronic illness

Any chronic illness that affects your urination or ability to sweat can lead to dehydration. For example, if you have kidney disease, you're more prone to dehydration because of excess urination. People with cystic fibrosis and diabetes are also at risk for a fluid imbalance.

Certain medications

Some medications have side effects, like increased urination or profuse sweating. These medications put you at risk for dehydration, especially if you don't know about the specific side effects of the drug.

You're also at risk for dehydration if you work outside during the hot summer. If you're an athlete who trains amid summer without adequately hydrating, you're also at an increased risk for dehydration.

To schedule your IV hydration treatment, don't hesitate to call the Life Point Medical team today at 706-782-0016 or schedule an appointment online with Dr. Beck at our Clayton, Georgia, office.

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