Are you getting dehydrated? Lots of people are.

In this hot weather it’s vital that we all drink enough water. We sweat more when it’s hot; it’s one of the ways our body keeps us cool. However, if we don’t get enough water we may become dehydrated, and in this weather that can lead to some serious health consequences.  

As you become dehydrated, you’ll feel thirsty, your mouth may feel dry. You may also become tired and fuzzy-headed, you probably won’t feel the need to go to the toilet and if you do, you’ll have a reduced urine output and it’s likely to be dark yellow.

Anyone can become dehydrated, but certain groups are particularly at risk. These include:

  • babies and infants – they have a low body weight and are sensitive to even small amounts of fluid loss 
  • older people – they may be less aware that they are becoming dehydrated and need to keep drinking fluids 
  • people with a long-term health condition – such as diabetes

As an ambulance service we have already seen this manifest itself in a rise in calls to elderly people many of whom have fallen just because they are dehydrated. This can lead to serious injuries such as broken hips which can be very debilitating and life changing.
In this warm weather, please make sure you drink plenty of fluids such as water, diluted squash or fruit juice. These are much more effective than large amounts of tea or coffee and fizzy drinks may contain more sugar than you need which has it’s own consequences. 

We’d also urge you to check up on elderly relatives and friends to make sure that they are keeping well in this weather.

For more information log onto NHS Choices

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