Hydration is an essential part of life. Dehydration occurs when the body loses fluids faster than it takes them in. This can occur through sweating, vomiting, or diarrhea. Dehydration can be a serious medical concern that can lead to hospitalization or be life-threatening. Learn more about the proper hydration tips with AFC Urgent Care Burlington. Our providers can recommend proper tips, help recommend treatment to avoid dehydration in the future, and treat dehydration before it becomes life-threatening.
How Long it Takes to Rehydrate
There is no right answer to how long it takes to rehydrate your body. If your stomach is empty, it is not working to digest any food, so it can easily digest water. It can take just 5 minutes to begin rehydrating your body. On the other hand, if you drink water while eating, your body will prioritize digesting food before water. This often takes up to 120 minutes to digest water and rehydrate your body.
Symptoms of Dehydration
Dehydration symptoms are similar for both adults and children, but some groups are at higher risk than others. Babies, the elderly, and those with chronic health concerns are more likely to become dehydrated easier. Symptoms of dehydration include:
- Feeling thirsty
- Dark-colored urine
- Feeling dizzy, lightheaded, or tired
- Having a dry mouth
- Peeing fewer than four times per day
Drinking alcohol, exercising, and spending time in the sun can dehydrate your body faster. It’s important to watch for warning signs, such as inability to keep fluids down, diarrhea for more than 24 hours, or sleepiness.
Rehydrating Your Body
In general, it is easy to keep your body hydrated as long as you maintain it throughout the day. Water is the best source of hydration. It’s recommended to drink at least 64 ounces of water every day. You can also receive the water you need from other beverages, fruits, and vegetables.
Drinking coffee and tea in moderation can help contribute to hydration. Caffeine, however, can be extremely dehydrating. It’s important to consume these options in moderation, as well as incorporate additional beverages. Sports drinks contain electrolytes that can hydrate your faster.
Fruits and vegetables can be a tasty way to add hydration to your routine. Fruits such as berries, melon, oranges, and grapes are all sources of water. Vegetables such as carrots, lettuce, cabbage, and spinach are the same. Studies have found that frozen fruits and vegetables may be even better at helping keep you hydrated. Oxidation can cause them to lose valuable nutrients, whereas being frozen keeps them preserved.