A woman died after drinking too much water too quickly. Now her family is raising awareness about water toxicity.

A woman died after drinking too much water too quickly.  Now her family is raising awareness about water toxicity.
Stock photo of a woman drinking water.

Stock photo of a woman drinking water. Ashley Summers died after drinking too much water too quickly.Getty Images

  • Ashley Summers dies unexpectedly after drinking too much water too quickly.

  • Her family was shocked to learn that she had died of water poisoning.

  • Drinking too much water can mess with the sodium levels in the body, causing the cells to swell.

The family of a woman who then died Drink plenty of water Too quickly on a boating trip raises awareness of what is known as water intoxication.

“It was a huge shock to all of us,” said her brother, Devon Miller. WLFI News. “I was like, ‘This is something?'”

Ashley SummersD., 36, a daycare worker in Monticello, Indiana, with two young daughters, died unexpectedly July 6 after a boat ride on a lake with her husband and children over Independence Day weekend.

Miller said Summers developed a headache on July 4 and felt like she couldn’t get enough water. He said she drank four bottles of water during a 20-minute boat ride from a sandbar to the pier, before leaving her home later that day and never waking up.

“It stopped her blood vessels like a hose in a hose and stopped blood flow to the brain,” Miller said.

Water intoxication is where the electrolyte balance in the body is thrown off

Water intoxication, also known as water toxicity, is uncommon but can occur if a person drinks too much water too quickly, which leads to an imbalance of electrolytes in the body and causes sodium levels in the body to drop rapidly.

sodium helps to Maintains blood pressure It is vital for the healthy functioning of nerves, muscles, and body tissues. But when the amount of sodium in the extracellular fluid falls below normal due to excess water consumption, the water moves into the cells to balance the levels, causing the cells to swell. When brain cells swell it can be life threatening.

Usually, people are more at risk of water intoxication when they drink water after a long workout, Where the body loses water and electrolytes when it sweats. People who run marathons or ultramarathons are at particular risk for this reason.

However, water toxicity can also be the result of a psychological condition called Psychological polydipsia, which is when someone drinks an excessive amount of water because they feel very thirsty, even though their body does not need any water physiologically. It often affects people with schizophrenia.

Dr. Alok Harwani, an emergency physician at IU Health Arnett Hospital in Indiana, told WLFI News early: Signs Water intoxication can include feeling out of it, tiredness, headaches, and feeling generally unwell.

“If you are really concerned that you or a loved one is not behaving properly and you are concerned about water intoxication, do not hesitate to call 9-1-1,” he said. last symptoms They can include restlessness, irritability, muscle spasms, seizures, and coma.

Once identified, water intoxication requires hospitalization.

To avoid water intoxication when drinking too much on a hot day or after a workout, Hrawani recommended dividing your water intake with beverages like Gatorade or snacks like fruits and vegetables to replenish electrolytes.

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