Diagnosis and Treatment of Dehydration

What is Dehydration?

The loss of water from the body is called as dehydration. It disrupts normal metabolic processes causing headaches or making the person to faint. There are three types of dehydration. The first one is called as hypotonic where the loss of electrolytes, primarily sodium from the body is more than the loss of water. The second is named as hypertonic where the loss of water is considerably more than the loss of electrolyte and the third type is named as isotonic with equal loss of electrolytes and water. In all the cases, immediate attention has to be given to bring normalcy to the health conditions.

Causes of Dehydration

The predominant reason for dehydration attributes to the external environment. Prolonged sweating is the common reason for dehydration. If you are exposed to the environment of dry air for a long period of time, it leads to dehydration. Diarrhoea and vomiting also accompany dehydration. Other than the external causes, some infectious diseases may cause dehydration. Cholera, yellow fever and gastro intestinal diseases usually accompanies with dehydration. A greater care has to be taken, if the person is suffering from these diseases. Fasting is another common cause for dehydration, which may lead to increased weight loss, decreasing the body fluid correspondingly.

Symptoms of Dehydration

The primary symptom is a headache. There are chances of frequent dizziness because of dehydration. Sometimes, dehydration leads to unconsciousness. Dry mouth, insomnia and less urine also attribute to dehydration. The individual becomes tired very frequently. A study reveals that even increased intake of caffeine can cause dehydration, as it is a strong dehydrator. The blood test can be taken, if there are one or more of these symptoms. The symptoms of dehydration become severe with increase in the loss of water. The heart compensates for the loss of water by pumping in more oxygen, thereby causing increased blood pressure. There will be no sweat generated, causing raise in body temperature. Elderly people suffer from dehydration to a larger extent and they face even more serious consequences as the sensation of thirst diminishes with age.

Treatment of Dehydration

Immediate attention has to be given if the person fells unconscious or faints and steps have to be taken straight away to increase the electrolyte and water level in the body. If the magnitude of dehydration is less, it can be easily managed by drinking more quantity of water, which immediately helps to get recovered. Juices can be given without delay, which will instantly help mind to get refreshed. If the problem is of a little higher magnitude, it can be managed by oral rehydration therapy, a medical treatment, wherein the electrolytes are fed to the patients orally. If the treatment is not given, the effects may be very severe and sometimes may even prove to be fatal.

Prevention of Dehydration

The dehydration can be prevented by few simple steps that could prove very helpful. If there is excessive loss of sweat from the body due to playing or any other physical activity, it can be immediately compensated by drinking equivalent amounts of water or juices. If you have dry lips or less urine, then immediately it is recommended to drink water and check progress after sometime. It is always advisable to drink water frequently so that there will be no problem of dehydration. It is not necessary to worry for drinking little increased amount of water, as kidneys will help in removing excess water from the body. If the person lives in environments which are dry and hot, the intake of water has to be correspondingly increased to compensate for the water loss from the body.

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By Edward