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It is summertime, with the temperature going up we need more water. Often the symptoms of dehydration go neglected or undetected.

Most people need 8 to 12 cups of water per day. People need more water during extreme hot and cold temperatures, while exercising, and while sick. In addition, women who are pregnant and/or lactating need additional water.

The symptoms of dehydration are the following:
* thirst
* dry mouth
* fatigue
* headache
* increased body temperature
* fast breathing
* dizziness

When water loss is severe, you suffer from:
* swollen tongue
* delirium
* kidney failure
* eventually death

Here are some ways to increase and maintain enough fluids:

* Never pass a water fountain without drinking from it
* Carry water along with you to work or play
* Drink water with each meal and snack
* Drink less coffee and soft drinks. Replace with water.
* Drink water before, during , and after exercise
* If you are sick, drink more water
* If you are in an room with air conditioner or heater, drink more water

Caffeinated beverages contributed to dehydration. This includes sodas and coffee. Caffeine is a diuretic. Diuretics promote loss of fluids by promoting urination. Alcohol is also a diuretic. If you consume these beverages, try to cut them down or drink more water.

Drink 8 to 12 cups of water per day. If you have trouble keeping up with the amount put that amount in a pitcher each day. Finish the pitcher before the end of the day. If you do not like the taste, squeeze lemon or lime juice in it. Fruit juices and milk count toward the total amount of fluids needed, but they also add extra calories.

Dehydration is potentially fatal. It is important that you take it seriously. Our bodies are mostly water; we need this to live. Protect yourself! Always be armed with extra fluids.