PARENTS have been warned about the seven signs they need to be aware of that could mean your child needs urgent medical attention.
As temperatures rise during the summer months, kids are at greater risk of becoming dehydrated.
Dehydration is when your body loses more fluids than you take in, which can happen to youngsters if, say, they are out playing all day on the beach while on holiday.
The NHS warns the condition can become a serious problem if it is not treated.
It stresses that babies, children and older adults are particularly at risk.
There are seven signs the NHS warns that can indicate someone is seriously dehydrated and urgent medical assistance is needed.
- you're feeling unusually tired (or your child seems drowsy)
- you're confused and disorientated
- you feel dizzy when you stand up and it does not go away
- you have dark yellow pee or you're peeing less than normal (or your baby has fewer wet nappies)
- you or your child are breathing quickly or has a fast heart rate
- your baby or child has few or no tears when they cry
- your baby has a soft spot on their head that sinks inwards (sunken fontanelle)
If you think you or your children are suffering the advice is to initially call 111 or get help from 111 online.
Signs of dehydration in a baby may include:
- a sunken soft spot (fontanelle) on top of their head
- sunken eyes
- few or no tears when they cry
- not having many wet nappies
- being drowsy or irritable
The advice is also to drink fluids if you think you have any symptoms.
The NHS adds: “If you feel sick or have been sick, you may find it hard to drink, so start with small sips and then gradually drink more.”
If you're being sick or have diarrhoea and are losing too much fluid, you need to put back the sugar, salts and minerals your body has lost.
You may need to consult a pharmacist who can recommend oral rehydration solutions, which are mixed with water and drunk.
Ask your pharmacist which rehydration solutions are right for you or your child.
People can reduce the risk of becoming dehydrated by simply drinking fluids regularly.
The NHS advises that water or diluted squash are “good choices”.
You should drink enough during the day, so your pee is a pale clear colour.
Drink more when there's a higher risk of dehydrating.
For example, if you're being sick, sweating due to hot weather or exercise, or you have diarrhoea.
Children under the age of 5 should get plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration.