oral rehydration salts

It is amazing how much information is absorbed over travels in which either I or others
have been sick. This knowledge has served me incredibly well, but I
believe that a little bit more knowledge would be beneficial. So far
this trip one individual had a GI tract bacterial infection, and another
apparently has an ulcer. Both have been amazed by the glories of oral
rehydration salts (ORS).

In case you have never heard of ORS, let me explain what they are as
they have literally saved millions of lives around the world. When
people (this is particularly true of children), get diarrhea or are
vomiting, they loose massive amounts of water and electrolytes. Even if
you are drinking lots, you still have to somehow get the electrolytes.
Far too often people have ended up in the hospital or even died because
of the dehydration associated with an illness as opposed to the actual
illness.

Think about giving someone Gatorade (minus the flavoring) on speed. If
you are hydrated, it tastes like you are drinking salt water. If you are
truly dehydrated, it tastes like plain water, or might even taste sweet.
It is amazing how wonderfully our bodies were created that they crave
the things we need. Yesterday one student started out her litre of ORS
thinking it tasted just like water; the final third she did not want to
put down because of how salty it tasted.

I do not know where to find ORS in the USA, but they can be found in
nearly any clinic or pharmacy for mere pennies overseas. I highly
suggest you keep a packet or two in your first aid kit as dehydration
can and does happen anywhere. As I ask the ladies here every few days in
the beginning: are you peeing clear?

 

27 June 2006

Upcoming Trainings

The first training will happen this Thursday thru Saturday, the second
training is the following Thursday thru Saturday. Each training is
hosted by one village, and another village sends four individuals to the
hosting village for the training. As the villages are within a 30 minute
drive, we travel to and from the villages. During the lunch breaks the
first I will also be doing some sampling that needs to happen, and
surveys will occur this Sunday afternoon at two villages as well. My
time will be full, but before it all I get the glories of market day on
Wednesday.

I am beginning to think that I should create a ‘to do’ list for bits of training that I would be useful in the future. Top of that list would be some nursing or medical training. I have all of the first aid you get from lifeguard training as well as the nice little pile of other information that is absorbed over travels in which either I or others have been sick. This knowledge has served me incredibly well, but I believe that a little bit more knowledge would be beneficial. So far this trip one individual had a GI tract bacterial infection, and another apparently has an ulcer. Both have been amazed by the glories of oral rehydration salts (ORS).

In case you have never heard of ORS, let me explain what they are as they have literally saved millions of lives around the world. When people (this is particularly true of children), get diarrhea or are vomiting, they loose massive amounts of water and electrolytes. Even if you are drinking lots, you still have to somehow get the electrolytes. Far too often people have ended up in the hospital or even died because of the dehydration associated with an illness as opposed to the actual illness.

Think about giving someone Gatorade (minus the flavoring) on speed. If you are hydrated, it tastes like you are drinking salt water. If you are truly dehydrated, it tastes like plain water, or might even taste sweet. It is amazing how wonderfully our bodies were created that they crave
the things we need. Yesterday one student started out her litre of ORS thinking it tasted just like water; the final third she did not want toput down because of how salty it tasted.

I do not know where to find ORS in the USA, but they can be found in nearly any clinic or pharmacy for mere pennies overseas. I highly suggest you keep a packet or two in your first aid kit as dehydration can and does happen anywhere. As I ask the ladies here every few days in the beginning: are you peeing clear?

One Reply to “oral rehydration salts”

  1. Hello Pam!

    I was just surfing your wonderful blog with many interesting photos and exciting travels then I saw the comment on oral re-dehydration salts. You probably do not remember me but, I met you several years ago at your wonderful parent’s home in Santo Domingo. Your parents are GREAT people and I have felt so blessed to have known them. Anyway I got you blog address from their Christmas letter. About ORS, I got dreadfully sick in the DR on Easter when I returned to my compo and indulged again in a special holiday drink known as “Habituala con letch”. This time it produced terrible diarrhea and sickness in me. I got out my ORS just in time for a visit from my older brother whom I had invited to go scuba diving with me on the northern cost in Sosua. I was a little better in several days and was able to go. After this experience I had to find the same ORAL RS I used in PC. So I looked them up on-line after returning to the high country of NC. I could only buy a whole case of them. This was enough for the rest of my life! I still have tons left. I bought them from Jiamas Bros in Kansas City in Missouri…anything can be found on-line. With much love for a happy New Year.
    Karen

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