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Safety of Water

Waterborne illnesses may infect more than 1 billion people who do not have access to safe water.

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Not Enough Water

Not Enough Water

Credit: US Army
Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/soldiersmediacenter/6012302807/
License: CC BY-NC 3.0

When you don’t get enough water you feel thirsty. But what else happens to your body? What happens if you cannot get water?

Why It Matters

  • You can go weeks without food, but only a few days without water.
  • Most of our body mass is water and much of what is in our cells is water.
  • Credit: Howard Perlman; U.S Geological Survey
    Source: http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/propertyyou.html
    License: CC BY-NC 3.0

    Functions of water in the human body [Figure2]


  • If you are mildly dehydrated, you are unable to regulate body temperature, blood cells and nutrients do not move well through your body, food doesn’t move through your guts, and leftover waste products don’t move.

Show What You Know

With the link below, learn more about dehydration. Then answer the following questions.

  1. What do electrolytes do in the human body?
  2. Why can’t you think and move well when you are dehydrated?
  3. What are the symptoms of mild dehydration?
  4. What are the symptoms of moderate dehydration?
  5. What is happening to your body when you are severely dehydrated?
  6. If you are severely dehydrated, what do you need to do immediately?

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Image Attributions

  1. [1]^ Credit: US Army; Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/soldiersmediacenter/6012302807/; License: CC BY-NC 3.0
  2. [2]^ Credit: Howard Perlman; U.S Geological Survey; Source: http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/propertyyou.html; License: CC BY-NC 3.0

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