Dehydration: What's the best way to stop my child dehydrating?
Tuesday 19 February 2008
Whenever our young children develop diarrhoea we are advised by the surgery to give them Dioralyte, to prevent them from getting dehydrated. This contains sodium chloride (salt), potassium chloride (similar to salt), glucose (sugar) and disodium hydrogen citrate. Would it not be just as good to use water with a bit of salt and sugar in it? What about plain water?
Dr Fred Kavalier answers your health questions
Dioralyte is the brand name of a powder that contains, as you say, essentially sugar and salt. The non-brand name is ORS, or oral rehydration salts. When a child has diarrhoea and vomiting, the greatest risk to their health is dehydration. ORS dissolved in water is an ideal fluid to prevent dehydration. Its combination of sugar and salts is more readily absorbed in the stomach than plain water. I wouldn't recommend you make up your own version of ORS. Too much salt can be dangerous and even fatal. It would be safe, however, to add a couple of level teaspoons of ordinary sugar (sucrose) to about 250ml of water.
Please send your questions and suggestions to A Question of Health, 'The Independent', Independent House, 191 Marsh Wall, London E14 9RS; fax 020-7005 2182 or email to email@example.com. Dr Kavalier regrets he is unable to respond personally to questions.
Life & Style blogs
Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
KickAssTorrents down: biggest file-sharing site moves to .cr domain after takedowns
Audrey Hepburn is officially Britain’s style icon – 22 years after her death
Protein World 'Beach body ready' advert: Mass demonstration in Hyde Park planned against 'body-shaming' weight loss advertisements
The confessions of men who ordered mail-order brides
- 1 Avengers: Age of Ultron: Nearly 700 German cinemas refuse to show movie
- 2 Donald Trump decides that Baltimore riots are Barack Obama's fault
- 3 X Factor in crisis as numbers of people auditioning plummets
- 4 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
- 5 Baltimore riots: Furious mother marches her son home live on TV
£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This firm of accountants based ...
£30000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are a financial services c...
£30000 - £32000 per annum + car allowance and on call: Ashdown Group: A succes...
£15000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Well established small company ...