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water Intoxication-How much water is too much?

Drinking enough water is important for many different reasons- such as preventing fatigue, flushing out toxins, regulating blood pressure, staying hydrated, etc. What isn't as commonly talked about is what happens when we get too much water.

The definition of water intoxication is: "A lowered blood concentration of sodium (hyponatremia) that occurs due to the consumption of excess water without adequate replacement of sodium." Although it is uncommon for people to overindulge in water to the point of making them fatally sick, it is possible and important to know the risks.

How does water intoxication occur?

-consuming a high volume of water in a short amount of time (usually young people trying to prevent dehydration when participating in vigorous sports)

-Abnormal renal failure/ kidney dysfunction, diabetes insipidus, or gastroenteritis

-When water is overconsumed after the use of illegal; drugs (ecstasy)

Signs and symptoms of water intoxication:

-headaches, confusion, disorientation

-nausea and vomiting

-impaired mental state and psychotic symptoms

-muscle weakness, cramping, twitching, aches, and fatigue

Water intoxication is most likely to occur when someone consumes more than 1.5 liters of water within an hour, especially if they are exercising intensely, have renal failure, kidney damage, diabetes, or a mental condition that affects their judgement. Hydration is important, but to prevent water intoxication and hyponatremia you should make sure to drink the right amount of water in proportion to how much sodium you're losing, to manage underlying health conditions, eat a balanced diet, and pay attention to your thirst.

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Wednesday, 08 December 2021

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