Have you ever thought about why sodium is important for the human body? Sodium is a mineral and an electrolyte, meaning that it controls the fluids that exist in the cells and around them. It also has a saying in how the muscles work, and how the nerves react.
This mineral can be found in the lymph and in the blood, and its level is mostly controlled by aldosterone. This hormone dictates the kidneys whether to eliminate sodium out of the body, or to keep it. The sodium test (serum sodium test) basically measures the level of sodium that’s in your blood.
If there’s too little sodium in the blood, the patient usually has symptoms such as dizziness, vomiting and nausea. If there’s too much, it could lead to high blood pressure.
The sodium test is usually made to monitor the effects of some medications or to get a bigger picture of the patient’s health before a surgery for example.
The Sodium Blood Test
This test can’t be done at home, so a professional has to take a blood sample and analyze it. Regarding the preparation before taking the test, you might have to interrupt some medication but only if your doctor tells you so.
Normal Ranges for Sodium Blood Tests
The level of sodium in the blood should be between 135 and 145 mEq / L. If your result came up but the sodium level is lower than the normal range than you probably suffer from headaches, fatigue, disorientation and confusion. It is called hyponatremia and it can cause serious damage to the brain and body.
If the sodium level is high you probably experience symptoms such as insomnia, fatigue, thirst or increased heart rate.
Hypernatremia is commonly a problem for those who don’t drink enough liquids, eat salty food, have hormone problems or have too much cortisol.