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June 5, 2023

Why Is Dehydration Dangerous?

Posted In: Fitness & Wellness, Nutrition

Dehydration can occur for several reasons. Illness can cause it. If you’re vomiting, have diarrhea, or both, you’ll lose a lot of liquid and become dehydrated. Sweating can cause dehydration, whether it occurs due to a fever, an intense workout, or a hot summer day. It can be dangerous, especially for the very old and very young. It’s about the amount of water in the body for both groups. Children’s bodies are smaller, so losing a small amount via vomiting has a far more severe effect. The water volume in the body naturally reduces as you age, making older adults more susceptible, just as some medications and conditions do.

Watch for symptoms.

Lethargy and crankiness are two symptoms of dehydration. The interior of the mouth and the tongue are dry, and when the baby or toddler cries, there are no tears. The infant’s eyes and the soft spot on the skull may be sunken, and the diaper will remain dry for three hours. Symptoms for adults have some similarities, like less frequent urination and fatigue. In some people, it causes extreme thirst. A sure sign is darker-colored urine. Dizziness and confusion can also occur. In seniors, sometimes dehydration is mistakenly labeled dementia due to mental disorientation. Mild dehydration can cause constipation.

Achy muscles and joints can signal dehydration.

Muscle cramps, aching muscles, and sore joints can alert you to mild dehydration. Achy joints from dehydration can affect those with arthritis even more. Water is necessary for the synovial fluid that cushions the joints and delivers nutrients. It reduces joint friction. Dehydration reduces joint fluid and increases pain. Muscle cramps from dehydration occur because the body is protecting itself. When fluid and electrolyte levels get low, it diverts the fluid from the digestive system, causing stomach cramps, and your appendages, causing muscle cramps, to ensure there’s enough fluid for the heart, lungs, and other vital organs.

Prevent dehydration.

If you’re sick, vomiting, or have diarrhea, finding the cause is the first step. You need to rehydrate in small amounts continuously. Water or broth can help do that. For the senior that’s dehydrated, check medications and increase fluid intake. It doesn’t have to be water, tea, herbal tea, coconut water, and fruit juice will suffice. To prevent sweating yourself into dehydration, always carry a bottle of water with you and sip throughout the day. If you’re sweating excessively, consider a sports drink to replace the electrolytes.

  • Don’t turn to coffee if you’re flagging out and ready to fall asleep. It might be dehydration. Try drinking a cold glass of water first to see if it helps. You can help muscle cramps and aching joints similarly.
  • Rather than turning to a sports drink to replenish fluids and electrolytes, consider coconut water. It’s healthy and contains all the necessary electrolytes. Look for ones without added sugar.
  • The pinch test is a quick way to see if you’re dehydrated. Pinch the skin on the upper arm or abdomen. If it snaps back quickly, you’re not dehydrated. Dry cracked lips can also indicate dehydration.
  • Dehydration can play with your blood pressure. In some people, the reduced blood volume can cause low blood pressure. In others, the reduced blood volume causes vessels to constrict, increasing blood pressure.

For more information, contact us today at Prime Fitness Studio