Thirsty? Ins and outs of dehydration


If you suspect you are dehydrated, it is important to rehydrate. In addition to water, oral rehydration solutions (e.g., Pedialyte) are good options for mild to moderate dehydration because they provide electrolytes and carbohydrates, which help your body absorb water better.

To avoid nausea and to get the best results, all fluids should be sipped slowly. Drinking too quickly could lead to discomfort or vomiting. In addition, be sure to stay in a cool environment and rest to allow your body to rehydrate without sweating.

With children, be sure to call their doctor if they are experiencing vomiting that lasts for more than one day or diarrhea that lasts more than a few days.

Other reasons to call the pediatrician:

  • Your child cannot keep any fluids down or has not been drinking for many hours.
  • Your older child has not urinated in the last six to eight hours, or your baby or toddler hasn’t had a wet diaper in four to six hours.
  • There is blood in your child’s vomit or stool.

If your dehydration is severe, you cannot keep fluids down, or if your symptoms don’t subside with fluid intake, go to a hospital so you can be placed under the care of a doctor. In these instances, you will likely receive fluids through the vein (called intravenous fluids) to rehydrate quickly.

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