Heat Rash (cont.)

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How much water should I drink in hot weather?

It is hard to gauge how much water is lost through sweat, and the thirst mechanism may not be sensitive enough to remind a person to drink enough. In general, the kidneys are a good guide to whether there is enough water in the body. If the body is dehydrated, the kidneys will try to hold on to as much water as possible. Decreased urine production, urine concentrated in color, and a strong urine odor are signs that the kidneys are trying to conserve the body's water supply. Urine is clear when there is enough fluid in the body.

In a hot environment, a person should drink enough water to make the urine clear, and make sure the body is producing sweat. Sweat and urine loss also involves electrolyte loss. Although drinking water is good, other fluids such as sports drinks should also be consumed to replace lost electrolytes to avoid other problems like hypokalemia (low potassium). People that are taking medications for conditions such as diabetes, kidney problems, and congestive heart failure (CHF) need to be especially careful about their fluid intake, and discuss how to avoid hot-weather related problems with their doctor(s).

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/22/2014

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