Bodily fluids lost due to diarrhea need to be replaced with urgency. Administering ORS at the first signs of diarrhea saves lives.”
Oral Rehydration Salts or ORS is administered to patients with dehydration to rehydrate the body. It is quite a simple mode of treatment and can prove to be lifesaving.
WHAT CAUSES DEHYDRATION?
Dehydration occurs when a person loses more fluids than is consumed. As a result, the body does not have enough fluid to conduct normal functions. We lose bodily fluid through sweat, urine, and tears. Diarrhea and excessive vomiting also cause loss of fluids; if left unchecked it can lead to dehydration that can even prove fatal.
Anyone can get dehydrated, but it is more dangerous amongst children. The main cause for dehydration in babies and young children is diarrhea. Acute Diarrheal disease is the leading cause of death in infants and young children in developing countries – and the true reason behind this fact is dehydration. Fluids lost due to diarrhea need to be replaced immediately. Instead of focusing only on the diarrhea, caregivers should bear in mind that the child is losing more fluids and could eventually succumb to dehydration. Administering ORS at the first signs of diarrhea, saves lives.
SYMPTOMS OF DEHYDRATION:
WHAT IS ORS?
Dehydration from diarrhea or any other cause can be treated at home using Oral Rehydration Solution. It is a special combination of salts (such as sodium and potassium), which can be mixed with water and consumed to treat dehydration. ORS solution helps replace lost fluids and electrolytes that are important for the body to function normally.
ORS are easily available at pharmacies and are inexpensive. Read the instructions on the cover and follow the steps to prepare the solution. The steps are usually the same:
HOW TO MAKE ORS SOLUTION AT HOME
If for some reason an ORS sachet is unavailable right away, ORS solution can be made at home following these simple steps:
This homemade mix is effective in rehydration. However, adding too much sugar can worsen diarrhea and too much salt is not good for young children. Hence measure out the quantities with caution.
DOs and DON’Ts
SENIOR REGISTRAR – PAEDIATRICS
MBBS, MD ( PAEDIATRICS)