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16 Home Remedies To Treat Dehydration

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16 Home Remedies To Treat Dehydration November 28, 2017

Does your thirst feel never-ending? Do you feel unsatisfied even after having multiple glasses of water? If you answered yes to these questions, there is a high chance that you are dehydrated. When your body loses more water than it takes in, it may lead to dehydration (1). Although dehydration is quite common among all age groups, it may have more hazardous consequences for children and older adults. However, your worries can take a back seat because some of the best home remedies to combat dehydration are listed here. Read on to find more about the causes of dehydration, its symptoms, side effects, and remedies to treat it.

Table Of Contents

What Is Dehydration?

Dehydration occurs when your body is unable to retain fluids and electrolytes. When there is a reduction in the water content of the body, the salt-sugar balance goes haywire, which affects the functioning of the body. There are many factors that cause dehydration. Let’s take a look at them below.

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Causes Of Dehydration

Dehydration may be the result of a minor underlying issue, such as a rigorous workout session or decreased water intake. Some other causes of dehydration are as follows:

  • Diarrhea Or Vomiting: Both diarrhea and vomiting lead to excessive loss of water from your body, and this can cause dehydration.
  • Fever: Running a high fever increases your chance of becoming dehydrated.
  • Frequent Urination: Frequent urination following a disease like diabetes or intake of certain diuretic medications also has the potential to result in dehydration.
  • Sweating In Excess: If your body loses a lot of fluids after an intense workout, you are at a higher risk of becoming dehydrated.
  • Age: Older people and infants are at higher risk of becoming dehydrated.
  • Chronic Illnesses: Individuals suffering from chronic diseases, such as diabetes and kidney diseases, are also at higher risk of becoming dehydrated.
  • Weather: Extremely hot or cold weather has the potential to cause excessive water loss in your body, leading to dehydration.

Let us now look at the common signs and symptoms of dehydration in adults and infants.

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Signs And Symptoms Of Dehydration

 In Adults

Dehydration can have mild to severe impact on the affected individuals. Some of the most common signs and symptoms of dehydration in adults include:

  • A dry and sticky tongue
  • Excessive thirst
  • Less frequent urination
  • Dizziness
  • Urine becomes dark
  • Fatigue

In Children

The signs and symptoms of dehydration in children may vary from that of adults. The common symptoms of dehydration in children and infants are as follows:

  • A dry mouth (2)
  • Eyes and cheeks appear sunken
  • Increased sleep and lack of energy
  • Increased tiredness
  • Dry diapers for more than 3 hours
  • Absence of tears while crying

Dehydration could be a major concern when it affects children and must be attended to immediately. Let’s now look at some side effects that are often associated with dehydration.

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Side Effects Of Dehydration

Dehydration may also cause some unusual side effects like

  • Bad breath
  • Frequent chills
  • Cravings for sweets
  • Cramps in the muscles
  • Headaches
  • Dry skin

Dehydration can turn serious when left untreated and may also lead to a medical emergency. It is, hence, of utmost importance to treat the condition as soon as you observe its onset. You can do so by following the simple and natural remedies mentioned below.

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How To Treat Dehydration Naturally

  1. Bananas
  2. Buttermilk
  3. Barley Water
  4. Soups
  5. Green Tea
  6. Coconut Water
  7. Essential Oils
  8. Homemade ORS
  9. Pickle Juice
  10. Cranberry Juice
  11. Apple Juice
  12. Orange Juice
  13. Lemon Water
  14. Salt
  15. Yogurt
  16. Epsom Salt Bath

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Best Home Remedies For Dehydration

1. Bananas

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You Will Need

1-2 bananas

What You Have To Do

Have a banana before indulging in any intensive physical activity.

How Often You Should Do This

Do this twice daily.

How This Works

Dehydration causes a deficiency of potassium in your body. Bananas have high potassium content and can help replenish its levels and combat dehydration (3).

Caution

Bananas can be included in your infant’s diet only if he/she is more than 6 months old.

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2. Buttermilk

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You Will Need
  • 1 cup of buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon of dry ginger
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix dry ginger in a cup of buttermilk.
  2. Consume this refreshing drink.
How Often You Should Do This

You must drink buttermilk at least 3 to 4 times a day to combat dehydration.

How This Works

Buttermilk is a natural probiotic. It is rich in minerals such as potassium and magnesium that are often depleted when you sweat excessively and become dehydrated (4).

Note: Buttermilk is not only safe but also beneficial for your infant’s overall health.

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3. Barley Water

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You Will Need
  • 1 cup of barley
  • 3 to 4 cups of water
  • 1/2 lemon
  • Honey
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a cup of barley to water and bring to a boil in a saucepan.
  2. Simmer for 40 to 50 minutes.
  3. Let the barley infusion cool.
  4. Strain the barley water and add lemon and honey for flavor.
  5. Drink this infusion at regular intervals throughout the day.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this 3 to 4 times a day.

How This Works

Barley water is an extremely healthy drink. It is loaded with many antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that can help to restore the fluids lost by dehydration and keep you hydrated (5), (6).

Caution

Wait for your little one to turn at least 6 months before introducing barley to his/her diet.

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4. Soups

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Soups are good sources of nutrients that can help in dealing with dehydration and its symptoms. The high content of minerals like potassium in soups makes them an ideal option to restore the lost nutrients in your body. For best results, consume soups before a rigorous workout session to help you stay hydrated. They can be used to treat dehydration in babies once they turn 6 months old.

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5. Green Tea

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You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon of green tea leaves
  • 1 cup of water
  • Honey (optional)
What You Have To Do
  1. Steep the green tea leaves in a cup of hot water for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Strain and consume the tea before it turns cold.
  3. You can also add honey for flavor.
How Often You Should Do This

You must drink green tea at least thrice daily.

How This Works

Green tea is rich in antioxidants. It also contains minerals like potassium and magnesium that can prevent dehydration. And contrary to popular belief that tea may be dehydrating due to its caffeine content, the water in the green tea more than makes up for the fluids lost in dehydration (7), (8).

Caution

Avoid giving your babies green tea as a treatment for dehydration as the caffeine in it is known to artificially increase the heart rate of infants.

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6. Coconut Water

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You Will Need

1 glass of young coconut water

What You Have To Do

Drink young coconut water throughout the day.

How Often You Should Do This

You must drink coconut water 4 to 5 times daily for best results.

How This Works

Coconut water is high in sodium and potassium, the levels of which are often depleted when you are dehydrated. This makes it one of the best options to treat dehydration naturally (9), (10).

Caution

Give coconut water to your baby only once he/she completes 6 months.

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7. Essential Oils

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a. Lemon Essential Oil

You Will Need
  • 1 to 2 drops of lemon essential oil
  • 1 glass of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a few drops of lemon essential oil to a glass of water.
  2. Drink this solution.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink the lemon-flavored drink once daily.

How This Works

Lemon essential oil has antioxidant and cleansing properties and is great to keep you hydrated and healthy (11).

b. Wild Orange Essential Oil

You Will Need
  • 1 to 2 drops of wild orange essential oil
  • 1 glass of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a couple of drops of wild orange essential oil to a glass of water and mix well.
  2. Consume this flavored water throughout the day.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this water at least once daily.

How This Works

Wild orange flavored water is a refreshing antioxidant drink that promotes overall health and enhances the functioning of your immune system. It is a flavorful and healthy way to treat dehydration as compared to unhealthy drinks with high sugar content (12).

c. Peppermint Essential Oil

You Will Need
  • 2 drops of peppermint essential oil
  • 1 glass of water
What You Have To Do

Add a few drops of peppermint essential oil to a glass of water and consume daily.

How Often You Should Do This

Do this 1 to 2 times daily.

How This Works

Peppermint oil contains potassium and magnesium – the reserves of which are low in dehydrated individuals. This peppermint oil infused water can help replenish the potassium and magnesium levels in your body and treat dehydration (13).

Caution

Infants and children should not be given essential oils internally until they are at least 6-10 years old.

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8. Homemade ORS

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You Will Need
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 6 teaspoons of sugar/brown sugar
  • 4 cups of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add the salt and sugar to water and mix well until they are completely dissolved.
  2. Drink this solution until the symptoms abate.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this multiple times until you have consumed at least 3 liters of this solution in a day.

How This Works

ORS stands for Oral Rehydration Solution. The name itself gives away the use of this remedy, i.e., to treat dehydration. Consuming ORS is one of the best ways to replace the lost fluids in your body. This is because the glucose content of sugar used in ORS helps in increased uptake of sodium and water that are lost due to dehydration (14), (15).

Note: ORS is one of the safest options to treat dehydration in infants. However, it is best to consult a doctor before doing so, especially if your infant is less than 6 months old.

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9. Pickle Juice

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You Will Need

1/3 cup of pickle juice

What You Have To Do

Drink pickle juice before or after an intense workout.

How Often You Should Do This

Do this once a day.

How This Works

Your body tends to lose a lot of potassium and sodium when you sweat excessively, and this leads to dehydration. A study revealed that men who were dehydrated found immediate relief from muscle cramps after consuming pickle juice. Pickle juice is high in sodium and is also known to have some amount of potassium in it. Thus, it is one of the best remedies to treat dehydration as it restores the electrolyte balance in your body (16).

Caution

Do not give pickle juice to your little one.

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10. Cranberry Juice

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You Will Need

2 cups of cranberry juice

What You Have To Do

Drink at least 2 glasses of unsweetened cranberry juice daily.

How Often You Should Do This

Drink this juice twice daily.

How This Works

Cranberry juice has high water content and is one of the best ways to treat dehydration naturally. It also contains essential sugars and salts that are often lost when you are dehydrated (17).

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11. Apple Juice

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You Will Need
  • 1 apple
  • 1/2 glass of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Blend an apple with half a glass of water.
  2. Drink this juice.
How Often You Should Do This

You can drink this juice twice daily.

How This Works

Apples are a rich source of magnesium. They also contain trace amounts of potassium and can, therefore, help in treating dehydration by restoring the lost minerals and electrolytes in your body. According to a study conducted in 2016, diluted apple juice is a more effective option as compared to electrolyte drinks to treat dehydration in children (18), (19).

Caution

You need to wait for your babies to complete at least 6 months before introducing fruit juices and solid foods in their diet.

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12. Orange Juice

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You Will Need

1 to 2 glasses of unsweetened orange juice

What You Have To Do

Drink a glass of unsweetened orange juice before or after a strenuous workout.

How Often You Should Do This

You must drink this juice once or twice a day.

How This Works

Oranges are rich in a lot of vitamins and minerals. They also have electrolytes such as potassium and little amounts of magnesium present in them. Oranges, therefore, have the potential to keep dehydration at bay by maintaining the electrolyte balance in your body (20).

Caution

Children below 6 years of age should consume just half a cup of orange juice in a day.

[ Read: Top 10 Health Benefits of Orange Juice ]

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13. Lemon Water

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You Will Need
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 glass of water
  • Honey (optional)
What You Have To Do
  1. Squeeze half a lemon into a glass of water.
  2. Add honey for flavor and consume this drink daily.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink lemon water two to three times a day.

How This Works

Lemon water not only refreshes you but also helps you overcome dehydration by restoring the levels of potassium, sodium, and magnesium in your body (21).

Caution

Wait till your baby is 6 months old before introducing lemon to his/her diet.

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14. Salt

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When you are dehydrated, your body ends up losing many significant minerals and electrolytes such as magnesium, potassium, and sodium. In such a situation, it is recommended to increase the intake of these to balance their amount in your body. Your body has the natural ability to maintain the balance of sodium and water. When you are dehydrated, this balance is disturbed. Thus, increasing the amount of salt in your diet via sports drinks and foods rich in sodium can help your body regain the sodium-water balance. This, in turn, can help combat dehydration (22), (23).

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15. Yogurt

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You Will Need
  • 1 cup of yogurt
  • A pinch of salt
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a pinch of salt to a cup of yogurt and mix well.
  2. Consume this daily.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this 1 to 2 times daily.

How This Works

Yogurt is a rich source of electrolytes and can hence combat dehydration by restoring the lost electrolytes in your body (24).

Caution

You can include yogurt in your infant’s diet if he/she is older than 6 months.

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16. Epsom Salt Bath

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You Will Need
  • 1 cup of Epsom salt
  • 1 bucket of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a cup of Epsom salt to your bath water.
  2. Soak and relax in the bath for 15 to 20 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

You can do this 2 to 3 times a week.

How This Works

The magnesium in Epsom salt can help to combat dehydration and its symptoms when absorbed by your body (25).

Caution

Although an Epsom salt bath is relatively safe for children, it may cause issues if the bath water is swallowed. Infants below the age of 1 should be kept away from this treatment.

[ Read: 12 Best Benefits Of Epsom Salt ]

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Although these remedies can help you in your fight against dehydration, following a few preventive tips and making a couple of lifestyle changes will prove beneficial in treating this condition.

Preventive Tips For Dehydration

  • Include plenty of water and hydrating juices like watermelon and strawberry in your diet, especially before and after a rigorous activity.
  • Use an electrolyte sports drink if you are planning to workout or exercise for more than an hour.
  • Avoid alcohol consumption as it increases dehydration.
  • Quit smoking as it can cause dehydration in the long run.
  • Wear lightweight and light-colored clothes if you are working out or exercising outdoors.
  • Follow a healthy diet with high water content foods such as cucumbers, yogurt, papaya, and green salads.

Now that you know how to treat dehydration naturally, what are you waiting for? All the remedies mentioned above will help you combat dehydration. However, in serious cases, it is best to consult your doctor immediately. You can go ahead and use these remedies for mild to moderate cases of dehydration and let us know if they worked for you in the comments section below.

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Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

Is milk good for dehydration?

Yes, milk is a very good option to rehydrate you. In fact, a study concluded that milk is better than water and electrolyte drinks to combat dehydration due to its high content of nutrients and electrolytes. But if you are worried about those extra calories, better stick to water.

What are the best drinks to treat dehydration besides water?

Besides water, fruit juices such as watermelon, strawberry, and orange, whole and skimmed milk, sports drinks, as well as coconut water can help in keeping you hydrated.

Which is the best electrolyte drink that can prevent dehydration?

Oral rehydration solution (ORS) is one of the best electrolyte drinks to prevent dehydration in adults and infants alike.

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