Cobb County Fire Department
Emergency Medical Information

WATER - The Sixth Essential Nutrient 

There are six essential nutrients that each person should incorporate in their daily diet. These include water, carbohydrates, fruits and vegetables, protein, dairy products, and fats. Water, ironically, is the nutrient that people name last, but it is the most important nutrient in terms of our survival. If we abstain from all six nutrients, we will die first from dehydration. Water is involved in maintaining a safe pH(acid/base) balance and many metabolic functions. 

There is a difference between drinking water and drinking fluids. Coffee, tea, and soft drinks do not count as water intake. Because these drinks most often contain caffeine, a diuretic, you lose water when you ingest these fluids. If you drink caffeinated beverages regularly, you should increase you water intake to compensate for the water loss. Coffee, tea, and soft drinks contain chemicals, preservatives, and additives which need to be metabolized by your liver and kidneys. The recommended intake of water is eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day. As a rule of thumb, drink a liter of water for every 1,000 calories you eat. If you exercise, weigh before and after you exercise and replace the difference with water. To avoid dehydration, it is better to pre hydrate than to re hydrate. One of the first signs of hydration is fatigue. Drinking your water, will give you more energy to help meet the challenges of your day. Here's to your health! 

Emergency Medical Procedures 

Every year 250,000 adult Americans die from cardiac arrest. The key to surviving a heart attack is based on the "Chain of Survival." Early defibrillation and advanced care are paramount. When you see a possible heart attack victim CALL 911 IMMEDIATELY and then begin CPR. 

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If you feel you may be suffering from a heart attack, CALL 911 IMMEDIATELY. Cobb County Fire & Emergency Services has thoroughly trained Paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians ready to assist you. The signs and symptoms of a heart attack includes: 

How to recognize a heart attack:
altNot all of these symptoms occur in every heart attack. If any occur CALL 911 IMMEDIATELY!

  • Chest pain that lasts more than 3-5 minutes.
  • Pain that feels like a "pressure," "fullness," "squeezing," or "heaviness".
  • Pain that is located behind the breastbone and then spreads to the shoulder, neck, lower jaw, or down the arm. Sometimes the pain may even be felt in the back.
  • Lightheadedness, "feeling dizzy" during the pain.
  • Fainting, completely losing consciousness.
  • Sweating, breaking out in a cold sweat but without a fever.
  • Nausea, usually without vomiting.
  • Shortness of breath.



  • Choking

    If someone is choking you should CALL 911 IMMEDIATELY. Do not wait, hoping that the object will clear. Our Paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians would much rather arrive on the scene and be no longer needed than to arrive with someone in cardiac arrest due to a blocked airway. Remember these facts next time you witness a possible choking:

    altThis is the universal sign for choking (left). If you witness someone showing this sign or one similar in which you suspect choking, CALL 911 IMMEDIATELY. After calling 911, attempt to dislodge the object by using the Heimlich maneuver (below).

    If you have not been trained to use this maneuver, most restaurants have a poster that details the procedure. The best solution is to be trained in CPR. A CPR course also includes foreign body airway obstruction (choking) training. 



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    This illustration that shows the proper hand placement during the Heimlich maneuver. Pull your hands up into the patients diaphragm with quick thrusts. This maneuver is effective in dislodging small to moderate airway obstructions.

    If you are the only bystander on the scene, CALL 911 FIRST! 

    If other bystanders are present, yell for someone to CALL 911. 






    For more information you can contact the EMS department via e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

    Pictures and facts were taken from "Heartsaver FACTS", a publication produced by the American Heart Association.