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ORS sachet

ORS (oral rehydration solution) sachets contain rehydration salts and sugars. The solution is used to replace bodily fluids lost as a result of excessive sweating, vomiting or acute diarrhoea. ORS is available without a prescription and comes in convenient sachets, with the contents dissolved in water and then consumed.

What is ORS?

ORS (oral rehydration solution) sachets contain rehydration salts and sugars. The solution is used to replace bodily fluids lost as a result of excessive sweating, vomiting or acute diarrhoea. ORS is available without a prescription and comes in convenient sachets, with the contents dissolved in water and then consumed.

What is ORS used for?

Excessive sweating, severe diarrhoea and vomiting all make you lose more fluids, and thus also salts and sugars, than you usually would and can make you suffer from dehydration, characterised by increased thirst, dry eyes and mouth, drowsiness, less or no urination, confusion, and in severe cases, fainting. Infants, small children, pregnant women and frail or elderly people are more prone to dehydration when there is excessive loss of fluid. ORS prevents dehydration, with the sugars and salts in the sachets helping water to be absorbed from the intestines and restoring moisture balance in the body.

How to use ORS

For treating severe diarrhoea, one sachet after each loose bowel movement is recommended. The contents of the ORS rehydration sachets should be dissolved in 200 ml of fresh drinking water. The solution can be consumed in one go or taken in sips over the course of the day. ORS can be kept in the fridge for up to 24 hours after it is dissolved. Infants should be given the solution before the breast or bottle. Do not dissolve the sachets in anything other than water (i.e. not in formula or breast milk). Continue to use ORS rehydration sachets for as long as you have diarrhoea. Seek medical advice if the diarrhoea lasts for longer than three days or is accompanied by fever or blood in the stool. Consult a doctor if infants under two years or elderly people above 70 years still have watery diarrhoea after one day of using ORS.

Dosage

The recommended dosage of ORS rehydration sachets for adults, children and infants is:

  • To prevent dehydration: 10 ml of ORS per kg of body weight after each loose bowel movement;
  • To treat dehydration: 10 ml (adults: 10 to 20 ml) of ORS per kg of body weight until the lost fluids are replaced (usually four to six hours).

Read the package leaflet before use.

Side effects

ORS rehydration sachets usually have no side effects because they contain salts and sugars that are also in food. In the unlikely event that side effects do occur, contact your doctor.

When not to use ORS

Do not use ORS rehydration sachets if you are allergic to any of the ingredients in the solution (see the package leaflet), have bloody stools or have a decreased kidney function. This medicine contains sugars and salts. Consult a doctor on the use of ORS if you have diabetes or are on a low-sodium diet.

Pregnancy / driving ability / alcohol

ORS rehydration sachets can safely be used by pregnant and breastfeeding women, provided that the maximum dose is not exceeded.

This medicine does not interact with alcohol or affect your ability to drive safely.

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