Dehydration: Symptoms in Children and Adults

Dehydration appears when you lose more fluid than you consume. That causes your body lack enough water and other fluids, which answer for carrying out its regular functions. In case you can’t replace lost fluids, your body becomes dehydrated.
Among the main causes of dehydration it’s necessary to note diarrhea and vomiting, active workouts, specifically those, done in hot weather, excessive sweating and fever.
Although anyone can be dehydrated, the group of risk includes people with chronic diseases, children and older adults.
You may prevent mild and moderate dehydration by taking in more fluids, but in case of severe dehydration an immediate medical treatment is needed. Make sure you consume much fluid during exercise, hot weather or illness. You should always replace what you’ve lost.
Symptoms of Dehydration in Adults

Mild to moderate dehydration usually causes the following symptoms:

  • Thirst
  • Dry, sticky mouth
  • Decreased urine output
  • Tiredness and/or sleepiness
  • Headache
  • Dry skin
  • Dizziness and/or lightheadedness
  • Constipation

Severe dehydration that requires medical emergency can be recognized by:

  • Sunken eyes
  • Very dry skin, mouth, and mucous membranes
  • Extreme thirst
  • Confusion and irritability
  • Little or no urination at all. Any produced urine will be darker than normal
  • Rapid breathing and heartbeat
  • Low blood pressure
  • Fever
  • No tears when crying
  • In hard cases, unconsciousness and delirium

Dehydration in Children

Children are more predisposed to dehydration than adults. Your child may get less fluid than he loses through diarrhea, vomiting, sweating or fever. Any of the signs described below can indicate that your child is becoming or is already dehydrated:

  • Strong-smelling and dark-yellow urine
  • Dry mouth and lips
  • More than 6 hours without urinating
  • No tears while crying
  • Lethargy
  • Feet and hands look splotchy and feel cold
  • Excessive sleepiness and fussiness
  • Sunken eyes
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness and/or delirium

Your child may quickly become seriously dehydrated, so if you observe serious signs of dehydration, take your kid to the emergency room. Doctors might consider him receiving fluids via intravenous tube until he’s rehydrated.
You can also give a call to your doctor and ask for consultation. In case of mild dehydration he might instruct you to give your child special liquid that that replenishes water and salts – electrolytes his body lost.