If you’re ever feeling thirsty or your mouth is moderate to severely dry, chances are you’re experiencing dehydration. When you lose more fluid then you take in, your body won’t function as properly. Our bodies are generally made up of 60% water, making it more than half of our body's basic needs. This makes water so essential, as it can help with digestion, lubricating of the joints, and killing harmful toxins to keep the skin healthy.
Initial Signs of Dehydration
Rapid heartbeat – If you aren’t performing any physical activity and you notice you have rapid breathing or a rapid heartbeat, it could be a sign of dehydration from depleted amounts of electrolytes.
Lightheaded, dizzy – The brain consists of about 73% water, so it’s no surprise that less intake of daily water you get will cause your head to experience symptoms such as confusion and feelings of wanting to pass out.
Decreased or dark urine output – If you find your urine is coming out a darker color than normal, you probably haven’t had enough water to drink in the day. If you pinch your skin at the top of your hand and it moves back slowly, this is a good indicator of moderate to severe hydration.
Later signs of Dehydration
The less water you have in your system, the less your body will be able to regulate its body temperature; increasing your risk of hyperthermia. Other signs of severe dehydration include:
- Low blood pressure
- Skin tenting
- Bad Breath
- Fever & Chills
- Cravings for sugar/sodium
Common Causes of Dehydration
The first most obvious reason of dehydration is not intaking enough throughout the day. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determined that adequate daily fluid intake is about 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men and 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for women.
The most common causes of becoming dehydrated include:
- Hot temperatures
- Drinking too much coffee or alcohol
- Working out frequently
If you think you may be having a true medical emergency and are having difficulties with breathing, call 911 or have someone take you to the nearest ER.
Call our office today at (214) 494-8222 for more information.