What happens when someone has too little sodium in the body?


Quick Answer

Low levels of sodium in the blood may result in fluid imbalance in the body, abnormal function of the nervous system and poor regulation of blood pressure. Sodium is naturally available in most foods, table salt and baking soda, states WebMD.

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Full Answer

When individuals have low sodium levels in the blood, they are said to have hyponatremia. People may develop this condition if they engage in extreme exercise that causes a loss of the mineral through dehydration. Consuming too much water may also cause an imbalance of the mineral. Diarrhea and malnutrition are other causes of hyponatremia.

Some common symptoms of this condition include nausea and vomiting. Individuals may experience general body weakness, muscles spasms, headaches, altered personality, confusion and seizures. In cases of severe sodium deficiency, the victim may fall into a coma or die.

Doctors may carry out a blood test to determine whether a person is suffering from hyponatremia or not. After diagnosis, the condition may be treated by changing the amount of water consumption or eating foods that are likely to contain the mineral.

Changing the amount of salt in food and treating the underlying cause are other methods that may be used to correct the condition. Intravenous fluid and electrolyte replacement can also be a treatment option, according to Medicinenet.com.

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