26 September 2023

Heated health warns of dehydration danger

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Queensland Health is urging people to remember the importance of proper hydration and sun safety as the hot weather hits.

Assistant Deputy Director at the Department of Health, Bronwyn Nardi said that under the hot Queensland sun, it was very easy to become dehydrated, especially when physically active.

“Dehydration is the result of your body losing water that is not being replaced quickly enough. Your body can lose water very quickly in hot weather by sweating, and you also lose water simply by exhaling,” Ms Nardi said.

“Remember it’s not just the elderly or children that can be affected by dehydration; it can affect any Queenslander, even if you’re fit and healthy.”

She said dehydration could have serious consequences such as heat exhaustion and heatstroke, and could result in serious illness.

“Even if you’re heading out on a short bushwalk, run, cycle or paddle, you should always be carrying water during the warmer months — at least one-to-two litres per person,” Ms Nardi said.

“If you’re heading out for a half or full day on the water or in the bush, it’s recommended to carry at least three-to-four litres of water and drink it regularly throughout the day — don’t wait until you’re thirsty.”

She said it was a good idea to head out early to avoid the warmest parts of the day and to even think about choosing locations offering some shade as much as possible.

“Symptoms of dehydration include thirstiness, a dry mouth, headache or light headedness or dizziness,” Ms Nardi said.

“The best thing to do to avoid and treat dehydration is to drink water, and you can also use oral rehydration solutions to replace electrolytes. Avoid alcoholic, caffeinated or sugary drinks,” she said.

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