Not drinking adequate amount of water in summer can lead to dehydration, a condition which can make one feel dizzy, thirsty, tired, and have a dry mouth and lips, experts say. The condition will also lead to one urinating less, with the colour of the urine changing.
But why is that so? Before understanding that, lets first know all about dehydration and its causes.
What is dehydration?
According to ClevelandClinic.org, dehydration is the absence of sufficient amount of water in the body. Even losing a little bit of water, as little as 1.5 per cent of your body’s water, can cause symptoms of dehydration, it stated.
Since our bodies try to cool down through the natural process of sweating, it can lead to dehydration, especially during summer. This makes it essential for one to drink more water. Other reasons can be diarrhoea, vomiting, certain medications, diuretics, increased urination, and fever, said Dr Anuja Lakra, Consultant – Internal Medicine, HCMCT Manipal Hospital, Dwarka.
Signs and symptoms
Dehydration causes people to initially start feeling thirstier, have dry mouth, dry lips, and they also start feeling more tired, and sometimes dizzy as well, shared Dr Lakra. One can experience vomiting accompanied by loose stools, and even excessive sweating that can lead to dipped water content in the body, said Dr Vikrant Shah, consulting physician, intensivist, and infection disease specialist, Zen Multispeciality Hospital Chembur.
How does colour of urine help detect dehydration?
Dr Lakra suggested one to first note their frequency of going to the washroom to pass urine. “Normally if a person goes seven to eight times, they’ll go only two to three times if dehydrated. Also, their urine will appear more yellowish, more concentrated, and have a foul or strong smell. Essentially, concentrated urine or deep-yellow urine indicates dehydration,” she said.
Dr ChandraVeer Singh, consultant otorhinolaryngologist, and head and neck onco surgeon, Wockhardt Hospitals Mira Road added that dark yellow urine is an alarming sign, and one “must drink more fluids to prevent dehydration”.
The colour of urine should be pale yellow or crystal clear — which indicates adequate fluid consumption.
What to do to prevent dehydration?
To avoid dehydration, apart from regularly drinking fluids, cut down on salty foods, do not do any heavy or strenuous workouts, and seek immediate medical attention if you have vomiting or diarrhoea, said Dr Tribhuvan Gulati, Expert Diabetes, Thyroid, Metabolic Disorders Apollo Spectra Hospital, Delhi. “Also, try to limit your intake of alcohol, coffee, sodas, and colas as these are dehydrating in nature. Avoid going outside during peak sunny hours,” Dr Gulati said.
Dr Lakra suggested one to consume a variety of liquids in the form of normal water, coconut water, juices, electoral water, glucose water. “Also, butter milk, and fruits that have high water content like muskmelon and watermelon, should be consumed to keep oneself hydrated,” she mentioned.
Here are some benefits of drinking water, as suggested by Dr Ajay Agarwal, Director, Department of Internal Medicine, Fortis Hospital, Noida.
*Water helps your muscles perform at their best.
*Water can help boost brain function and mood.
*Water can help prevent and treat headaches.
*Drinking more water may help prevent constipation.
*Drinking water helps flush toxins from your kidney.
*Water can help make your skin look good.
*Water helps prevent hangovers.
*Water helps regulate internal body temperature.
*Drinking water fights bad breath.
*Water helps in lubricating and cushioning your joints.
*Water helps the body eliminate waste through urine and sweat.