H2O, Is it in You?
On a hot summer day in 2010, my family and I were going to a baseball game in Sauget, IL. As we were pulling into the parking lot, the ticket manager fell to the ground leaving us in shock. He lay still as a rock. We jumped out the car, rushed to the man, only to find out later from the hospital that he passed out from dehydration. We picked him up; brought him to a cold air conditioned car; and started forcing him to drink water non-stop, hoping it would help until the ambulance got there to help.
Every year, according to the staff at the Mayo Clinic, more than 300 humans die from dehydration and 200,000 are hospitalized but don’t die.
How do we know when we’re dehydrated? Well, according to the staff of MedicineNet.com, the symptoms include, dry mouth,the eyes stop making tears, sweating may stop, muscle cramps, nausea, vomiting, heart palpitations, lightheadedness (especially when standing), weakness and decreased urine output.
Sometimes people mix up heat stroke and dehydration. The difference is that heat stroke comes from dehydration, and is a type of hypothermia. Also, said by the Mayo Clinic staff, dehydration is when your body doesn’t have the water needed to keep your body’s functions moving. Our body functions include the brain, lungs, kidneys, heart and more.
Mary Ruether, a biology teacher at Hazelwood East, told SciJourner that if water levels are low because of dehydration, less food can be carried in the blood to the cells that need it, and less liquid waste can be filtered from the kidneys (less urine produced). Essentially, blood becomes more viscous, which means it gets thicker. This causes the blood to move slower and the cells can’t get where they need to go. She also told SciJourner that the reason urine is yellow is because as the waste from our body is passed through the kidneys and flushed out; the waste passes through a chemical in the gallbladder. Ruether also said that another risk factor of being dehydrated is that it can cause our joints to weaken, which is important for people with arthritis whose joints will be in even more pain from being dehydrated.
One special way of telling if you’re dehydrated is a urine test. When I took this test the first time my trainer was able to tell me I was dehydrated because the color of my urine was a really dark yellow, meaning I haven’t been drinking enough water. So, as the days went by I drank plenty of water. When I retook the test I passed, because the color of my urine was a really light yellow, almost clear.
As humans, we live our lives every day breathing, sweating, and using the bathroom, but what many people do not realize is that they are losing water from their bodies. While losing water, our body’s functions begin to weaken causing us to feel tired and drained. Even though we get this feeling, we still act like its normal. Well it’s not and we don’t realize it until we pass out, go into shock or die, said WebMD.
Being hydrated is very important. The staff of BetterMedicine.com said being hydrated is so important, because water takes up 75% of our blood.
For someone dehydrated taking electrolytes can help. WebMD said electrolytes are minerals, such as sodium and potassium, that are found in the body. They keep your body's fluids in balance and help keep your body working normally, including heart rhythm, muscle contraction, and brain function. Ways to put electrolytes back into the body is by drinking fluids with electrolytes in them, like Gatorade, or eating foods with electrolytes, such as fresh fruit, according to WebMD. Also, the staff on WebMD says that a good way for everyone to prevent
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becoming dehydrated is by drinking 8–12 8 oz. glasses of water each day.
After the scene in Illinois, my father said, “That was one of the scariest things I’ve ever experienced.” Even though I felt the same, later that night we received a call letting us know that the man was recovering and would be okay. Cyrus Daniel
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Last Updated (Tuesday, 29 January 2013 15:28)