Hydration is essential to maintain good health and functioning organs. Most healthy people are well hydrated if they drink regularly. However, different clinical studies have shown that people with swallowing difficulties often exhibit signs of dehydration. Recognizing what the signs and symptoms of dehydration are will help you identify your risks and take action early. 

The warning signs of dehydration are:

  • Dry or sticky mouth
  • Increased feeling of thirst. This mechanism may be impaired in older people due to the aging process, so an elderly sometimes does not express the need to drink
  • Low urine output
  • Darker urine 
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Weight loss
  • Disorientation

In cases of severe body water loss, these symptoms may develop: tachycardia or dizziness, severe disorientation and muscle cramps.

If you have any symptoms that may lead to suspicion of dehydration, consult your healthcare professional.

Recommended bibliography:

  • Good clinical practice guide in Geriatrics: Hydration and health. Spanish Society of Geriatrics and Gerontology. Ed. IMC.
  • Serra-Majem Ll, Gil A. Conclusions of the I International and III National Hydration Congress Madrid, Spain 3rd and 4th December, 2013. Revista Nutrición Comunitaria 2014; 20 (1): 2-12.