Dehydration happens more than you might think. It's actually quite a common problem, one that many know about. It's what happens when a human body loses too much of its fluids without having them replenished. However, many people think dehydration only happens when they're really thirsty or have been working out for a while. They might even envision someone stranded in the desert not knowing where the closest oasis is.
These examples are all true, but some are more extreme than the others. In fact, you don't need to be an athlete or in a desert to get dehydrated. Just sweating enough in hot weather can do it.Another possibility that can leave you dehydrated in regular daily life is just not drinking enough water in the first place. This might happen gradually, and you'd barely notice it until some point in the middle of the afternoon when you get really thirsty.
If this winds up happening to you, it might be a solid indicator that you've actually been dehydrated for some time, because if you wind up feeling thirsty, that's a definitive symptom of being dehydrated. Thirst is far from the only problem. Dehydration can leave you nearly debilitated because you'll feel lethargic, sick, tired, and possibly even faint.
Oddly enough, dehydration can happen to you even if you're taking in liquids. Drinks that have a lot of sugar content don't hydrate you very well, and alcoholic and caffeinated beverages might make you urinate more often, draining you of fluids. Coffee is another diuretic that does the same. All this means you can be drinking lots of fluids and actually getting dehydrated even more than you were!
Dehydration can also happen if your body happens to be losing water due to vomiting or diarrhea. This is often high volumes of water that were never absorbed and used in the first place. In cases like these, on top of losing lots of water, you're likely having difficulty replacing it because you feel nauseous. In many cases, pushing fluids can remedy it, and an electrolyte mixture might speed up the process of recovery.
Some cases of dehydration get serious enough that IV fluids are necessary from professional medical attention, although this only typically happens in extreme cases. Water is something that makes up two-thirds of a human body, and sometimes much more. It plays many roles in maintaining normal bodily functions. Your brain's weight is mostly water, and even slight dehydration can impact your mental function.
Water keeps your skin healthy through the elimination of toxins. It also lubricates your joints and eyes. Proper digestion is always facilitated by water, not just through urine, but also excrement, which can be hard to impossible to form and pass without water. Once water levels in the body drop, they need to be replaced. Otherwise, the imbalance between sugar and salts in your body can start throwing everything out of whack.
Drinking enough water is always the optimum way to prevent dehydration, both when you're ill or just going about your daily life. It sounds basic, but it does take a bit of conscious effort to drink a lot of water throughout your day so that you can enjoy better wellness and metabolism.
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