If 1%-2% of the body’s recommended water intake is lost, then you are already dehydrated. Dehydration is something that plagues the majority of people; even if you are not experiencing symptoms of dehydration, you can still easily be dehydrated and, statistically, you probably are. Here are the most common symptoms of dehydration and how to ensure you remain hydrated.
In cases with mild to moderate dehydration, the most common symptoms include having a dry/sticky mouth, feeling overly tired and weak, being thirsty, urinating less, dry skin, headaches, constipation and dizziness.
When a person is severely dehydrated, they experience all the symptoms exhibited by people who are mildly dehydrated but on a more severe level. In addition to these symptoms, people who are severely dehydrated will be very irritable and even confused, they will have a dry mouth along with dry mucous membranes.
They will also have sunken eyes, low blood pressure, a rapid heartbeat, rapid breathing and a fever. The worst case is delirium and lack of consciousness. If you think a person is severely dehydrated, it is important to take them to the emergency room right away.
Unless you are chugging water 24/7, your body is constantly losing fluids and essential potassium and salts because this is what is in the fluids. The loss of salt creates an instant headache because the body is very sensitive.
The more severe the headache, the more severe the dehydration is. Also, more water loss causes your blood volume to drop, which then creates the end to the chain reaction where less blood flows to the brain and you then get an even bigger headache.
The daily hydration level test
The best indicator to see how hydrated or dehydrated you are is to look at the color of your urine. This way, you can easily see if you need to drink more water, or if you should continue to drink the amount of water you are currently drinking.
The best way to know how hydrated you are is to remember that the lighter your urine (or clearer), the better because you are more hydrated; the darker the urine, the more water you need to drink because you are dehydrated. This is the first and most common indicator of how much water you need to drink and this is also the easiest way to determine it.
8 steps to conquer dehydration
It’s time to drink up and I’m not referring to hitting the bar. You need to start drinking more water no matter the reason. There should be no excuses: it’s literally just water, and it won’t make you melt.
The most commonly recommended amount of water is eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day, so the easy way to remember this is by following the 8-by-8 rule.
Step 1: Make it flavorful
Cut up fruits such as cucumber, watermelon, strawberries, raspberries or blueberries and add these to your water. Water is bland and flavorless, but we do need to drink it. Don’t buy the flavorings that you can get at grocery store, though, as those are toxic.
Step 2: Order something spicy
This trick will not only have you chugging water, but will also get your metabolism working faster due to the spice.
Step 3: There’s an app for that
We all have cell phones that are very smart and handy. Install one of the many apps that will motivate you, remind you to drink and allow you to track the amount of water you’ve had each day. If you don’t want to have an app, then set alarms to remind you when you need to drink water.
Step 4: Make it an accessory
Buy one of those nice, reusable water bottles and carry it everywhere with you. Once you see it sitting there in the car or on your desk, you’ll feel the need to drink water and it will always be handy.
Step 5: Save money
When going out, don’t order any drinks—just ask for a glass of water. Your body and wallet will thank you.
Step 6: Deciding to cheat or not to cheat
This is not cheating, but at the same time, it kind of is cheating. If you can’t seem to drink enough water, then at least eat water-filled foods such as watermelon and cucumbers, but try not to rely on this as a way to hydrate yourself.
Step 7: Make it part of your weight loss plan
In a 2010 study done in the journal “Obesity,” it was proven that drinking lots of water can help with weight loss.
Step 8: Water and alcohol are two secret friends
Before and after you drink, as well as between glasses of wine, it is a good idea to drink a glass of water; this way, you will not get completely dehydrated, which is a side effect to drinking alcohol. This will also help to prevent against a hangover the next morning.
By following these eight steps, you will remain hydrated, your body will thank you for this as you will feel like you have more energy and you will be healthier overall.
During this hot summer, it is also important to stay hydrated due to the heat as it is natural for our bodies to become dehydrated much faster. Your skin will also thank you for this. As Zoolander says, “Water is the essence of wetness, and wetness is the essence of beauty.” If you have anymore tips on how to stay hydrated, feel free to share them below!