Before stepping outdoors make sure that you are hydrated. It is crucial to drink plenty of water and replenish all the lost fluids. During the summer months we go outdoors more, we are more physically active, and it is much hotter – all factors that dehydrate us.
One caution: drinks that contain alcohol or caffeine can actually increase fluid output, making it much harder to be properly hydrated. Signs of dehydration include:
- dry mouth
- little or no urination
Dehydration is a major cause of:
- Heat stroke – when body temperature rises higher than 40.6 °C (105.1°F). To avoid heatstroke wear lightweight clothing, avoid direct sunlight, use air conditioning, drink cold water, and avoid
- Seizures – dehydration leads to a lack of electrolytes. Electrolytes send electrical signals from cell to cell. When electrolyte levels fall too low these signals don’t function properly, leading to involuntary muscle contractions.
- Cerebral Edema – may occur when you drink after being dehydrated. The body sends water to the cells, however, it can send too much causing cells to swell and rupture.
Severe dehydration can also lead to kidney failure, coma, and even death.
As we are in full swing with gorgeous, sunny days and warm weather, remember to protect yourself against dehydration by drinking a sufficient amount of water!