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Dehydration Treatments

Dehydration: Treatments Inroduction

The first step in treating dehydration is prevention. For healthy adults this includes drinking eight eight ounce glasses of water every day. Water needs will be higher for certain people, such as athletes or people who live at high altitudes or in hot, dry climates. Athletes may benefit from drinking a solution that is fortified with the electrolytes that are lost through sweating, such as Gatorade.

Once dehydration develops, prompt recognition and treatment generally results in a good outcome and minimizes the chances of developing serious complications, such as coma. Treatment plans are individualized depending on the cause, the presence of coexisting diseases, the age of the patient, and other factors. Treatment generally involves a multifaceted plan that addresses the underlying or associated cause, such as vomiting or athletic overtraining, while safely rehydrating the patient.

Mild dehydration can often be cured with drinking fluids. For infants and children who have had vomiting and/or diarrhea, an oral rehydrating solution, such as Pedialyte, is often recommended. Any drink or fluid that contains caffeine, such as coffee or soda, is not effective for treating dehydration. Fluids that contain caffeine can actually make dehydration worse, because they cause the body to lose more water, which results in increased urination.

Moderate to severe dehydration generally requires hospitalization and possible intensive care. Intravenous fluids are administered to correct the dehydration. Electrolyte replacement may also be necessary. Electrolytes and other important parameters, such as vital signs, are frequently or continuously monitored. For life-threatening cases that include such complications as kidney failure and hypovolemic shock, life support measures may be necessary.

Treatments for Dehydration

The following treatments are listed for Dehydration in our knowledge base:

  • Hospitalization - Newborns and infants need special care; dehydration can be severe or even fatal
  • Water - but not enough alone, need electrolytes as well.
  • Fluids - broth or soups (for salt/sodium), fruit juices, soft fruits, vegetables (for potassium)
  • Intravenous fluids - in severe cases
  • Breast milk
  • Baby formula
  • Infant rehydration solutions - special medications containing the required electrolytes
    • Pedialyte
    • Ceralyte
    • Infalyte
  • Avoid milk products
  • Avoid greasy foods
  • Avoid high-fiber foods
  • Avoid sweet foods
  • Bland foods - during recovery, can move onto bananas, plain rice, boiled potatoes, toast, crackers, cooked carrots, skinless fat-removed baked chicken.
  • BRAT diet - for children during recovery: bananas, rice, applesauce, toast.

Alternative Treatments for Dehydration

Alternative treatments, home remedies, other other complementary therapies that have been listed as possibly helpful for Dehydration in various sources may include:

  • Oral rehydration
  • Cinchona homeopathic remedy
  • Phosphoric acid homeopathic remedy
  • Carbo vegetabilis homeopathic remedy
  • Calcarea carbonica homeopathic remedy

Latest treatments for Dehydration

The following medications/drugs/procedures are some of the latest treatments for Dehydration:

  • Oral fluids
  • IV fluids

Treatments for Causes of Dehydration

Review the treatment information pages for various causes of Dehydration:

More causes: not all possible causes for Dehydration are listed above; for a full list refer to causes of Dehydration.

Treatment Notes

Only your doctor can advise whether any of these treatments are appropriate for your specific medical situation. Always discuss all treatment options with your doctor before making a decision, including whether to start or discontinue any treatment plan.

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Dehydration:

The following list of conditions have 'Dehydration' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Dehydration or choose View All.

View All A B C D E F G H I J K L M N P R S T U V W #

Conditions listing medical complications: Dehydration:

The following list of medical conditions have 'Dehydration' or similar listed as a medical complication in our database.


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