Dehydration can be defined as "the excessive loss of water from the body." Our bodies require a certain amount of fluid intake on a daily basis to function; the minimum is about equal to 8 glasses (one liter or one quart). Requirements vary with activity and age, but most active persons need two to three times this basic amount. Basic fluid intake serves to replace the fluids which are required to perform our normal bodily functions. If we take in less or lose more fluid than is needed, the end result is dehydration.
Excessive loss of fluid through the intestinal tract can happen when the intestine is "inflamed" or damaged, or when bacteria or viruses cause the lining of the intestine to produce more fluid than can be absorbed. A decrease in oral liquid intake may be due to nausea or loss of appetite.
A reliable clue to indicate dehydration is a rapid drop in weight in few days (or at times hours). A rapid drop of over 10% of weight is considered severe. Symptoms may be difficult to distinguish from those of the original illness, but in general, the following signs are suggestive of dehydration; increasing thirst, dry mouth, weakness or lightheadedness (particularly if worsening on standing), darkening of the urine, or a decrease in urination. Severe dehydration can lead to changes in the body's chemistry, kidney failure, and can even become life-threatening.
Source: Portal Content Team
Last Modified : 2/29/2020