If you will not drink a lot of water then there are chances that you may suffer from dehydration. Your fluid regulation system balances the volume and composition of body fluids. The function of kidneys is to remove extra body fluids from your body. A small gland, hypothalamus, plays a very important role in this whole process. The hypothalamus controls ADH (antidiuretic hormone) which gives direction to kidneys to make less urine.
When there is disruption of balance between body fluids, it results in diabetes insipidus. In people with diabetes insipidus, pituitary gland is not able to perform its function i.e. storage and release of ADH. A specialist will first find out the form of diabetes insipidus you are having and will then decide which treatment is appropriate for you.
Types of Diabetes Insipidus
Central Diabetes Insipidus
When the pituitary gland get damaged due to genetic disorders, neurosurgery, head injuries or some diseases, it results in central diabetes insipidus. A synthetic hormone, desmopressin, is recommended by doctors to treat the deficiency of ADH (antidiuretic hormone). Your doctor may advice you to drink water only when you feel thirsty because desmopressin prevents water excretion and water can build up in your body.
Nephrogenic Diabetes Insipidus
The kidney can also stop responding to ADH if you take drugs like lithium and have chronic disorders including sickle cell disease, kidney failure, polycystic kidney disease and inherited genetic disorders. This condition is called nephrogenic diabetes insipidus.
You cannot take desmopressin because it will not work in this case. Instead of desmopressin, your doctor may recommend hydrochlorothiazide or indomethacin for treatment. He or she may also give you this drug in combination with amiloride. Your doctor may advice you to drink water only when you feel thirsty.
Dipsogenic Diabetes Insipidus
Another type of diabetes is dipsogenic diabetes insipidus which is caused due to disruption in the thirst mechanism located in the hypothalamus. In this condition, your body takes excess fluid that increases urine excretion and suppresses ADH (antidiuretic hormone) secretion.
You should not take desmopressin or any other drug to treat this form of diabetes as these drugs may decrease urine excretion but not fluid intake. You will still feel thirsty and will drink more water. Due to this, there will be low concentrations of sodium in your blood and your brain may also get damaged.
Gestational Diabetes Insipidus
Gestational diabetes insipidus occurs during pregnancy only. In this type of diabetes, an enzyme destroys ADH in the pregnant woman. Doctors may recommend desmopressin for treating gestational diabetes.
Some More Facts About Gestational Diabetes Insipidus
A pregnant woman is more prone to gestational diabetes insipidus during the third trimester of her pregnancy. The tests for this type of diabetes include urine test, blood test and water deprivation test. The woman may develop gestational diabetes insipidus in her subsequent pregnancies also if she developed this disease during her first pregnancy. Gestational diabetes insipidus disappears after delivery.
Advice For Pregnant Women
A pregnant woman should take care of herself from the first trimester till the third trimester of her pregnancy.
Photo Credit: Thepregnancyzone.com
She should eat a healthy and balanced diet and exclude sugar, fat rich foods, sweets, chocolates, junk foods like burger, chips, pizza etc. from her diet temporarily. She should select foods that are rich in iron and calcium. She should avoid eating carbohydrate containing foods.
Diagnosis Of Diabetes Insipidus
Your specialist will conduct few tests including urinalysis and a fluid deprivation test for the diagnosis of diabetes insipidus. Let’s study in detail about these two tests. In urinalysis, the specialist will do the physical and chemical examination of your urine. In your case, concentration of salt and waste will be low and the amount of water excreted will be high. This is so because urine of people with diabetes insipidus is less concentrated.
A fluid deprivation test will determine the factor responsible for causing diabetes insipidus. Diabetes insipidus can be caused due to a defect in ADH production, a defect in the kidney’s response to ADH (antidiuretic hormone) or excessive intake of fluid. This test will give you information about the changes in your body weight, urine composition and urine output.
Few Important Things You Should Know
The most important thing to remember is that your body needs enough fluids along with a balanced diet to stay away from any kind of disease. If your thirst mechanism is working absolutely fine and you are drinking enough fluids then you will not face any problem. However if you show carelessness in drinking water regularly then you may suffer complications like fever, dry mucous membranes, sudden weight loss, dry skin, sunken eyes, headache, irritability, muscle pains, fatigue and lethargy.
You should take good care of yourself and make certain changes in your lifestyle. You should take your medicines on time and visit your doctor regularly. Do not take any medicine without consulting your physician. You can share your opinions and views with people having diabetes insipidus through internet. Learn how these people have made changes in their lives to deal with this disease.
If you follow your fitness program daily then do not forget to ask your doctor about how much water your body will require after the exercise. During exercise, your body fluids are lost due to perspiration. It would be better if you keep a bottle of water with you before starting any exercise. Before starting any new exercise, consult your doctor and follow his or her advice.
You can also ask him or her about the type of exercises you can do or cannot do at this stage. If the climate is very hot outside then it would be better for you to skip your exercise program. While exercising if you observe symptoms like muscle cramps, nausea or fast heart beat then stop exercising immediately and visit your doctor at once.