Electrolyte deficiency – 6 most important causes and symptoms of dehydration.

Electrolyte deficiency – 6 most important causes and symptoms of dehydration.

Electrolyte deficiency – 6 most important causes and symptoms of dehydration.


The human body is mostly water. It is one of the most important ingredients, we cannot survive even several days without drinking.


Dehydration of the body can occur not only in hot weather or during sports. There are many other situations that can cause this. It’s worth knowing all of them to know what to avoid.

Elderly, children and the sick are the most exposed to dehydration. For them, the loss of water and electrolytes from the body is also the most dangerous.

A shortage of water and electrolytes is a very serious situation that threatens our health. In the worst cases, it can even be fatal. This is due to the fact that the main role of electrolytes is to improve the flow of water between the cells of the body. Electrolytes guarantee the smooth operation of the nervous and muscular systems. In addition, they regulate the entire energy economy.


Causes and symptoms of dehydration


  1. High temperature and physical exertion


The emergence of sudden heat is a great threat to people living in Poland. Temperature exceeding 37 C becomes dangerous, especially if, for example, due to the nature of our work we have to be outside. Adding to this even strong physical effort comes to the situation in which the body begins to lose even more water, overheats and weakens.

  1. Rota virus infections

Although rota viruses are most often associated with children attending kindergartens, they are also a great threat to adults. Very often parents who once had similar infections themselves, still get infected from their children. This is due to the mutation of the rota viruses that occurs virtually every year.

Symptoms of rota virus infection are troublesome diarrhea, vomiting and stomach ache, which clearly leads to dehydration if it lasts too long.

  1. High fever

A common cause of dehydration is also a high fever, which occurs due to various diseases. It leads to excessive sweating and thus loss of water and electrolytes.

  1. Diets and fasting

Monotonous diets and fasting can also lead to dehydration. Especially if they are used unreasonably and without medical supervision.

  1. medications

Even over-the-counter remedies can be harmful to our health because they lead to dehydration and loss of electrolytes and mineral salts. First of all diuretics and laxatives.

  1. Drinking small amounts of water

We feel thirst only when your body is already a little dehydrated, so you should reach for a bottle of water regularly, even at times when you don’t feel like drinking. Each adult should take about 2-3 liters of fluid. Unfortunately, many people do not drink such amounts, and do not even reach for water during the day. If instead you prefer to drink coffee or energy drinks, it is in this way can very quickly lead to dehydration.

Symptoms of dehydration that should worry us

Signs of dehydration are not always immediately noticed. At the moment when there is a strong thirst, usually the body is already slightly dehydrated. In more serious cases you may also notice dizziness, fainting, feeling worse, muscle weakness, cardiac arrhythmia, lack of appetite, muscle tremors or drowsiness and apathy.

The effects of dehydration are very dangerous for our health, so every day we should watch the amount of water drunk and at times when dehydration may occur, additionally take fluids with electrolytes.


Hypertonic dehydration – what is it?

One condition of dehydration is hypertonic dehydration, which is characterized by an increase in osmotic pressure. The body loses a large amount of water, leading to dehydration of cells. This type of dehydration arises in people who do not drink water (e.g. unconscious) or have lost it through hyperventilation or because of diuretics.

Hypertonic dehydration can be best recognized by dry skin and mucous membranes, central nervous system disorders or cardiac tachycardia. Treatment usually consists primarily of supplementing water deficiencies by administering fluids without electrolytes, such as table water. Sometimes you need to top up water parenterally.

What are the stages of dehydration?

Initially, dehydration at home can be recognized by a strong feeling of thirst. Then the water loss is about 2% of body weight. Then there is dry mouth, which already indicates a 4% loss. An increasing problem begins to appear when we have trouble speaking through dry mouth, because salivation is no longer correct.

Parents of young children or people caring for elderly people should especially watch how much their children drink water. Not only because in their case even slight dehydration can be dangerous, but mainly because children and the elderly usually don’t feel thirsty as often as healthy adults.