ORS is the life-saving solution for babies with dehydration, vomiting, and diarrhea. It plays a key role in hydration of babies, however, if not available can be prepared at home.If ORS packets are not available, mix an oral rehydration solution using one of the following recipes; depending on ingredients and container availability:
Recipe for Making a 1 liter ORS solution using Sugar, Salt, and Water
Clean Water – 1 liter – 5 cupfuls (each cup about 200 ml.)
Sugar – Six level teaspoons
Salt – Half level teaspoon
Stir the mixture until the sugar dissolves.
Important points when you are giving ORS to your baby:
The home-made solution is adequate in most cases leading to dehydration. If the diarrhea is severe, we can buy a special packet of Oral Rehydration Salts.
The instructions for preparation are mentioned on the back side of the packet we need to follow them carefully.
It is important to note that ORS solution must be given to the conscious dehydrated patient only.
It should be given sip by sip every 5 minutes until urination becomes normal. (It’s normal to urinate four or five times a day.)
Adults and large children should drink at least 3 quarts or liters of ORS a day until they are well. If the child/adult develops vomiting, we need to continue to drink the ORS.
The body will retain some of the fluids and salts we need even though there is vomiting. It’s most important to remember to take sips of liquids slowly.
Chilling the ORS may help.
In the case of diarrhea, we need to continue to drink the ORS. The fluids will not increase diarrhea.
Someone with symptoms of severe dehydration needs to go to an emergency room or other health care facility to get intravenous fluids (fluids given directly into the veins through a needle). If able to drink, he or she should also drink the ORS.
During or after treatment of dehydration, whatever is causing diarrhea, vomiting, or other symptoms should also be treated.