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What causes dehydration?

Dehydration may be caused by not drinking enough water, losing too much fluid or both. Any of the following may increase your chance of having dehydration:

  • advanced age with decreased ability to sense thirst or to concentrate urine
  • being in the sun or heat for too long, or sweating a lot, such as when you exercise
  • diseases, such as stroke, diabetes, heart problems or infections
  • medicines that cause you to lose water and salt, such as diuretics (water pills)
  • vomiting, diarrhea or fever that lasts a long time

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.