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Can Dehydration Lead to Serious Complications?

Stay hydrated: It’s one of the most common pieces of health advice and with good reason! The human body is about 60% water, and drinking water is vital for survival. But, beyond simply surviving, staying hydrated is crucial to keep your body functioning at its best. 

Read on to learn more about dehydration and its possible complications.

What Are The Serious Complications of Dehydration?

Extended or repeated dehydration can have serious complications, such as:

  • Seizures caused by electrolyte imbalance
  • Cerebral edema, or swelling of the brain, can occur when the body attempts to draw too much water into the brain cells
  • Low blood volume (hypovolemic) shock, is a life-threatening condition that occurs when low blood volume causes blood pressure and oxygen levels to drop
  • Heat injury, such as heat exhaustion, particularly if you’re sweating, exercising, or spending time outside on a hot day 
  • Kidney failure, which occurs when the kidneys can’t extract excess fluids and waste from the blood

These severe complications don’t typically occur with everyday dehydration. But, young kids, older adults, and individuals with underlying medical conditions are at a higher risk of these adverse effects. 

Keep an eye out for the following signs of dehydration:

  • Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Dry mouth, eyes, and lips
  • Dark-colored urine

Stay hydrated throughout the day by continually sipping water and drinking a full glass of water between each meal or snack. Remaining hydrated is far preferable to drinking water after you’re already dehydrated.

Nonetheless, if you experience the above signs of dehydration, rehydrate with fluids and foods that have a high water content, like fruits and vegetables. Eating a salty snack can also help you retain water and rehydrate faster. 

Restoring your body’s electrolytes is crucial after being dehydrated. IV therapy can rapidly rehydrate your body by delivering fluids and electrolytes directly to your bloodstream. Contact The Center for Natural & Integrative Medicine to learn more!

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