Woman, 32, dies from drinking too much water

A mother of two from Indiana has passed away due to excessive rapid water intake, as reported by her family. Ashley Summers, while enjoying a trip to Indiana’s Lake Freeman during the Fourth of July weekend, expressed feelings of dehydration and dizziness to those around her. She believed she couldn’t consume enough water to alleviate these symptoms and proceeded to drink numerous bottles of water in a short time frame. Upon returning home, she collapsed in her garage.

Her family promptly transported her to IU Health Arnett Hospital, but unfortunately, she never regained consciousness and ultimately succumbed to water toxicity. The doctor highlighted the importance of consuming electrolyte-rich foods or beverages, such as fruits or Gatorade, in addition to plain water, especially when spending extended periods outdoors in hot weather.

“It was a shock to all of us. When they first started talking about water toxicity. It was like this is a thing?” Devon Miller, Ashley’s brother, told WRTV.

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“Someone said she drank four bottles of water in 20 minutes. I mean, an average water bottle is like 16 ounces, so that was 64 ounces that she drank in a span of 20 minutes. That’s half a gallon. That’s what you’re supposed to drink in a whole day,” he added.

“It’s relatively rare,” Dr Alok Harwani, a physician at the hospital, told WLFI. “Now, what we are concerned about is just drinking too much water in a short period of time. Your kidneys can really only clear about a liter of water per hour.”

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This helps maintain a proper balance of water and sodium in the bloodstream. Instances of fatalities resulting from water toxicity have been observed in various circumstances in the past.

“Things to look out for are if you just start feeling really out of it, very tired, very fatigued,” he added. “Sometimes patients feel like they’re starting to have a mild headache, or are just feeling overall unwell. Those could be early signs of water intoxication … So, if you’re really concerned that you or a family member is not acting right and you’re worried about water toxicity, don’t hesitate to call 911, don’t hesitate to go to the [emergency room].”

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