blue bulletin from bcidaho

Stay safe and hydrated this summer

During the heat of the summer, everyone could use some extra hydration. But for some, getting enough water is even more important.

Babies and children up to age 4, people older than 65, and anyone who is overweight or on certain medications (like diuretics) are at a higher risk of dehydration or heat stroke.

woman at the beachAdditionally, people who live in areas with temperatures that regularly reach triple digits or at higher elevations also need to drink more water when it’s hot.

Signs of dehydration

Thirst isn’t always a reliable sign of dehydration, so keep an eye out for these indicators:

  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Sunken eyes
  • Dry mouth, lips and tongue
  • Feeling thirsty
  • Urinating less than normal

Are you grouchy or thirsty? Mild dehydration – as little as 2% fluid loss – can affect memory, mood, concentration and reaction time. The next time summer fun has taken a sour turn, try drinking some water and see if it improves your attitude.

Tips for drinking more water

These five tips from the University of Nebraska’s health center will also help you stay hydrated in the summer:

  1. Drink a full glass of water every morning when you wake up. This helps get your metabolism going for the day.
  2. Remind yourself to drink more. Use notifications on your phone to help remind you to get a drink or get a fun water bottle to have on hand so you can stay motivated.
  3. Listen to your body. Learn the signs of dehydration so you know when you’re not getting enough water.
  4. Instead of sugary drinks, try sparkling water or liquid water enhancers. This is a great way to have a refreshing drink without extra sugar.
  5. Set a daily goal. On average, men need 16 cups of water a day while women need about 12 cups. Make it a challenge each day to reach your goal.

Time to see the doctor?

For mild dehydration, drinking more water or drinks with electrolytes will often help. If you’re experience these symptoms, you should seek medical attention:

  • Confusion, slurred speech or hallucinations
  • Fainting or loss of consciousness
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Red, hot and dry skin
  • Fever of 103 degrees Fahrenheit or 39.4 degrees Celsius, or higher
  • Muscle twitching

Get care at home or on the go

Blue Cross of Idaho members can find a doctor by using the Blue Cross of Idaho member app or by visiting Log in to the app or your member account and select Find Care. You can search for doctors by specialty, location and more.

Download the Blue Cross of Idaho member app in the App Store or Google Play.

Even if you’re on vacation, you can still get care from Blue Cross of Idaho while traveling.

Enjoy your summer and stay safe!

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Posted: July 19, 2023