LINTHICUM, MD, July 17, 2008–Dehydration occurs when your body takes in less water than you are using. While playing sports, it is easy for a child to lose track of their fluid intake and become dehydrated. Without proper hydration, your child could suffer serious consequences. You can avoid dehydration by ensuring that you pay attention to your child’s fluid intake.
Some causes of dehydration include:
· Excessive sweating
· Inadequate intake of water
Some symptoms of dehydration include:
Untreated dehydration can cause:
- Kidney failure, which can eventually cause death because of the buildup of toxins, extra fluid and dangerous levels of minerals in your blood.
- Kidney stones, which form when some substances become concentrated in the urine and form solid crystals. These crystals can lead to the development of stones when materials continue to build up around them. Being properly hydrated prevents the substances from concentrating to the point of forming crystals.
- Seizures, which occur when normal electrical discharges in your brain malfunction, leading to involuntary muscle contractions
- Hypovolemic shock, which occurs when low blood volume causes a drop in blood pressure. This causes a reduction in the amount of oxygen reaching your tissues, which can be fatal.
- Cerebral edema (swelling of the brain), which occurs during rehydration when your cells may absorb too much water, which causes them to swell and rupture.
Proper hydration is essential not only to avoid the fatal effects of dehydration, but also to allow for proper genitourinary function. Proper hydration allows your body to eliminate toxins and may help prevent bladder, kidney and urinary tract infections (UTIs).
When to see a doctor
A healthy adult should seek medical advice if he or she experiences extreme thirst, no urination for 8 hours, dizziness and/or confusion. Children and older adults should seek medical attention if they develop severe diarrhea, with or without vomiting or fever; have vomited for more than 12 hours; have had moderate diarrhea for five days or more; can’t keep down fluids; are more tired or irritable than normal or are disoriented.
About the American Urological Association Foundation: Originally established in 1987, the Foundation is the premier provider and resource for the most current, comprehensive and reliable urologic health information. We advocate and educate to empower physicians and the public to progress toward the highest quality prevention, detection and treatment of urologic diseases. With the support and the strength of more than 16,000 physician members of the American Urological Association, the AUA Foundation strives to make certain that those who suffer from urologic conditions can enjoy the benefit of the highest level of care possible. As a nonprofit, 501 (c)(3) organization, all contributions to the AUAF are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. For more information, please visit our Web site at www.UrologyHealth.org, or call the National Urology Healthline at 866-828-7866.
Lacey Holt, AUA