How are you coping with the hot weather? Are you sick and tired of this heat? I mean are you really sick and tired due to the temperature? Feel like you’re chugging along on one cylinder? Dehydration could be the culprit. Nothing triggers fatigue, depression and mood swings like dehydration. Unfortunately, it can take hours before you realize that your body is in trouble.
I found out the hard way. Hopefully, my encounter with this lack of fluid will help you avoid the same pitfall.
Needless to say, I felt awful and couldn’t function normally. Before I could even get out of bed, “Charley Horse” grabbed my legs and also forced my toes to bend and curl against their will–pain, pain, pain! A rapid heart beat had me feeling like I had been running a race–as I got out of bed each morning. My throat was painfully dry and my tongue felt like it was glued to the roof of my mouth.
All day I was completely drained. Concentration abandoned me. Couldn’t even follow a simple recipe. Head was “swimming” and I couldn’t remember what I had just been thinking about. This went beyond brain fog. I thought I had come down with a case of dementia.
At times, chills had me reaching for a sweater even though the thermostat was on 79. Dizziness had me stumbling from room to room. Blood pressure dipped dangerously low leaving me even more tired, wobbly, and weak. Most afternoons, sleepiness took over sending me back to bed to nap. (I hadn’t napped since kindergarten.)
Increased thirst is a sign of dehydration, but you can’t rely on it, I never got thirsty. I blamed this lack of water for a disturbing nightmare about my father who died years ago. (I hadn’t had a nightmare about anyone or anything in years.) Not getting enough water will also show up in your face, highlighted by deeper fine lines and even deeper wrinkles–every woman’s nightmare!
Now I could understand this lack of fluid if I had been exercising or working in the yard, but I hadn’t been out of the house in several days. Beware! Dehydration can set in while spending most of the day sitting still in an air-conditioned room. Every day we naturally lose water and a small amount of electrolytes through sweat, breathing, and waste. Most of us fail to drink enough fluids to cover all we lose.
In my attempt to get back to normal, in addition to drinking water, I ate lots of soup, broth, fruits, and vegetables but nixed sugary drinks and juices.
How easy it is to forget the time when we’re engrossed in whatever we’re doing. To make sure I now get enough fluids every day, I set the timer so that I have to get up from the computer to go into the kitchen to drink or eat. Mounting evidence shows that sitting too long can cause major health problems and take years off your life. Also, by getting up, I’m reminded to do three 10-minute sessions of brisk walking in order to reach my goal of at least 30 minutes of exercise daily. When inconvenient to walk outside, I walk throughout the house–no excuses.
Obviously, staying hydrated is crucial for good health. Water is essential for every function, organ and cell in the body and can help with whatever ails you. For instance, evidence shows that water reduces the risk of kidney stones. Unfortunately, the rate of painful kidney stones is rising. One reason could be because adults, as well as children, would get a failing grade for water intake.
Dehydration is serious and can be deadly. When water level is really low, the body starts to shut down. My mother, who was an Alzheimer’s patient in a nursing home, died from kidney failure due to severe dehydration.
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