We know that it's important for all of us - including our kids - to drink plenty of water every day. It's even more important during these hot summer months!
Did you know that thirst is NOT a good indicator of dehydration? By the time a child feels thirsty, he or she may already be dehydrated. Thirst can be quenched long before the necessary body fluids have been replaced. So here are some early signs of dehydration:
- Dry or sticky mouth
- Eyes that look sunken into the head
- Lack of urine for 12 hours or a small amount of dark yellow urine
- Dry, cool skin
- Lethargy or irritability
- Fatigue or dizziness
Hot, dry or windy days can quickly lead to dehydration. If your kids are outside playing or involved in sports, make sure they are drinking extra fluids before the activity begins. They should also drink at regular intervals (every 20 minutes) during activity and after activity. And don't be fooled by all that time in the pool - it's easy to get dehydrated while swimming!
Here are a few ideas to keep your family hydrated:
- Let your kids pick out fun water bottles and take them with them as they go outside to play.
- If you're going to the pool or a sporting event for the afternoon, freeze your water bottles before you head out. They'll thaw throughout the afternoon and provide a cool drink!
- Watermelon is a great snack to keep the family hydrated!
- If you're involved in strenuous sports or activities, pack a combination of sports drinks and water. Electrolytes are very important on hot days and you lose those through sweat.
- Liven up your water with fruits and veggies; lemon, lime, cucumber slices, fresh mint, or orange slices.
So what are your favorite tricks for staying hydrated this summer?