How to Prevent Dehydration?

The only way to prevent dehydration is to drink lots of fluid in the form of plain drinking water, fruit juice or fresh fruit, vegetables as well as other foods with high water content. For most healthy people, thirst is a good guide of adequate fluid consumption. However, if you are doing exercise or if you have fever or other illness, thirst may not be adequate guide for fluid intake. Do not wait for thirst in such situations to drink water/fluid. You can obtain fluids from various sources other than water, such as beverages. You need to be careful in certain circumstances, when you may need more fluids than usual and you need to drink more than usual quantity of fluids and do not wait to get thirsty to have your water/fluid.ID-100289842

Exercise:

During exercise you need extra fluid. Because of burning of extra calories during exercise, you have profuse sweating and excess utilization of water. Hence you need to take extra water during exercise, the more vigorous and longer the exercise the higher is water/fluid requirement. One must keep this in mind while doing exercise, especially in hot and humid weather. It is best to drink approximately 500 ml of water (or other fluid of your choice) before starting exercise and keep drinking at regular interval during exercise. Drinking water/fluid more than required may cause some discomfort such as bloating or in some rare cases even hyponatremia (low sodium in blood due to excess drinking of low sodium fluid such as water), which may be dangerous.

Weather:

Dehydration is common during hot and humid conditions. One need to be extra cautious during summer for prevention of dehydration. Drink extra water at regular interval during hot summer, which may be humid too. Drinking cool water at regular interval can keep your body temperature down and at the same time replenish what you lost due to sweating. You may also lose extra fluid in some circumstances such as heated indoor atmosphere, if you are wearing insulated clothing, or if you are in high altitude area. In such situations also one need to drink extra fluid to prevent dehydration.

Illness:

Various illnesses cause extra loss of fluid. During fever one may lose a great quantity of fluid through breathing and perspiration. Hence extra fluid must be taken during fever. In most illnesses, water requirement is much higher than normal and need extra water consumption to prevent dehydration. During illness (such as fever) do not wait for dehydration symptoms to appear, but start giving extra fluid (such as oral rehydration solution) at the beginning of illness.

If there are symptoms of dehydration, the best solution is taking oral rehydration solution, instead of drinking plain water or fruit juice or other fluids, because they do not contain electrolytes that are lost during dehydration. Hence, use oral re-hydration solution in dehydration.

Image courtesy of [tuelekza] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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