Fun in the Sun: 5 Warning Signs of Dehydration
It doesn’t take long in the Texas sun for your body to take in less fluid than it puts out, causing dehydration to occur. When you’re dehydrated, your organs don’t have enough fluids and can’t function properly. Dehydration can quickly become dangerous.
Sports, outdoor exercise, swimming, lawn care and summer flu bugs can all lead to dehydration. “When you’re broiling in the sun, you know it, but a bad case of diarrhea can quickly lead to dehydration, and a patient might not notice it because he or she is too sick,” said Advance ER physician Dr. Thomas Allen.
“It takes a while to acclimate to the heat. It’s good to go slow at the beginning of the hot season to let your body adjust,” said Dr. Allen. “Prevention is the best medicine when it comes to dehydration. Don’t forget to drink.”
Here are 5 warning signs of dehydration to watch for in you and your children:
When your child is showing extreme fatigue during a game, or when your baby is fussy and extra sleepy, you might suspect dehydration. It’s time to push the sports drinks and water.
While not always a reliable gauge for dehydration, if your child needs a drink, make sure he or she gets plenty of water and takes a break from the activity. If you are really thirsty, skip the sugared drinks and grab some water first.
Dehydration can cause low blood pressure and a rapid heartbeat—both culprits that can manifest as dizziness. Take this seriously and find a place to rest out of the sun and get some clear liquids.
A headache can be one of the first things you notice when you are overdoing it and not getting enough fluids. Try drinking several times during an hour while taking a break from your activities to see if it helps your headache.
One of the best indicators of your body’s hydration is the color of your urine. If it is dark and smells strong, or if you are not producing any urine or if your baby’s diaper is dry, it’s time to take action fast.
When dehydration takes place, you need to take a break from the heat and replenish with water or sports drinks. “Coffee and alcohol contribute to dehydration, so it is best to avoid them and concentrate on drinking sports drinks or water,” said Dr. Allen. “But don’t wait too long. Dehydration in children and people with chronic conditions is very serious. Come to Advance ER right away for fast treatment.” An emergency room is the only place to receive IV’s for dehydration. Advance ER has the IV’s and fluids you need right away.
At Advance ER, you will be taken to a private room right away where you can enjoy bedside check-in and refreshments. Our on-site labs and pharmacy ensures our readiness to start treating your dehydration fast. Open 24/7 with two convenient neighborhood locations, we’re here right when you need us.
Meet Dr. Allen:
Thomas Allen, M.D., FACEP, is board-certified in emergency medicine. He received his medical degree from Oregon Health Science University, Portland, OR. He completed his internship at the Legacy Health Systems’ Emanuel and Good Samaritan Hospitals, Portland, OR, and his residency at the University of Texas at Houston Herman Hospitals, Houston, TX.
Dr. Allen has been practicing for over two decades. He and his family are active in their Dallas community and love being a part of the neighborhood.