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CPS provides advice to avoid dehydration over Easter Holiday Weekend. Safety first, prevent drowning

GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – Dehydration occurs when your body loses more fluid than you take in, and this Easter holiday weekend, where a lot of outdoor activities take place, the current hot and dry weather can make you very thirsty.

When the normal water content of your body is reduced, it upsets the balance of minerals (salts and sugars) in your body, which affects the way it functions.

Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a department within the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour, is advising the community to make sure they drink lots of water during the Eastern holiday weekend.

Dehydration is usually caused by not drinking enough fluid to replace what we lose. The climate with respect to very hot days, at the beach, the amount of physical exercise you are doing (particularly in hot weather) and your diet can contribute to dehydration.

Anyone can become dehydrated, but certain groups are particularly at risk. These include: babies and infants – they have a low body weight and are sensitive to even small amounts of fluid loss; older people – they may be less aware that they are becoming dehydrated and need to keep drinking fluids; people with a long-term health condition – such as diabetes or alcoholism; and athletes – they can lose a large amount of body fluid through sweat when exercising for long periods.

Water makes up over two-thirds of the healthy human body. It lubricates the joints and eyes, aids digestion, flushes out waste and toxins, and keeps the skin healthy.

Some of the early warning signs of dehydration include: feeling thirsty and lightheaded; a dry mouth; tiredness; having dark colored, strong-smelling urine; and passing urine less often than usual.

A baby may be dehydrated if they: have a sunken soft spot (fontanelle) on their head; have few or no tears when they cry have fewer wet nappies; and are drowsy.

The body is affected even when you lose a small amount of fluid.

CPS wishes the community and a safe Easter holiday weekend and to drink lots of water to avoid becoming dehydrated.

Consult your physician if you think you or your child is dehydrated.

As families prepare to enjoy the various Easter water activities, CPS is advising parents and guardians to be vigilant when their kids are in the water having fun this Easter holiday weekend at the beach or pool.

Drowning is among the five leading causes of death among people aged 14 years and under in the Americas, according to the first Global Report on Drowning: Preventing a Leading Killer, published by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Some strategies that can be used to prevent drowning are: installing barriers to restrict access to bodies of water; close supervision of infants and children under five; teaching children basic swimming skills and training possible bystanders in safe rescue and resuscitation.

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