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Dehydration can be mild, moderate or severe, depending on how much of your body weight is lost through fluids.
Two early signs of dehydration areÂ thirst and dark-coloured urine. This is the body's way ofÂ trying to increase water intake and decrease water loss.
Other symptoms may include:
Dehydration canÂ alsoÂ lead toÂ aÂ loss ofÂ strength and stamina. It'sÂ a mainÂ cause of heat exhaustion.
You should be able to reverse dehydration at this stageÂ by drinkingÂ more fluids.
See your GP if your symptoms continue despite drinking fluids, or if you suspect that your baby or toddler is dehydrated.
You should also contact your GP if your baby hasÂ hadÂ six or more episodes of diarrhoeaÂ in the past 24 hours, or if they have vomited three times or more in the past 24 hours.
If dehydration is suspected, you may be given aÂ blood test or a urine test to check the balance of salts (sodium and potassium) in your body.
If dehydration is left untreated, it can become severe.
Severe dehydration is a medical emergency and requires immediate medical attention.
IfÂ severeÂ dehydration is not treated immediately, it can lead to complications. This level of dehydration needs hospital treatment and you will be put on a drip to restore the substantial loss of fluids.
A baby may be dehydrated if they have:
Read about how to treat dehydration in babies.
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