The Importance Of Staying Hydrated For Young Ones

Hydration plays a crucial role in maintaining overall health. Our bodies contain approximately seventy percent water and are essential for several vital functions, including digestion, excreting waste, and regulating body temperature. The risk of dehydration increases during monsoons due to hot and humid weather, so it becomes extremely important to drink an adequate amount of water every day. 

But did you know kids are at a higher risk of being dehydrated as compared to adults? Yes, this is because of their smaller bodies and more physical activity. According to a report by the Healthy Kids Association, in relation to their size, children have a larger portion of their skin exposed to heat and sweating. This leads to excess water loss from their bodies. Along with this, they also don’t always recognise that they are thirsty and may forget to drink water.

According to the National Library Of Medicine, dehydration in kids can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, fever, decreased oral intake, lethargy, and headaches. However, these symptoms are mild, but prolonged dehydration can also cause urinary tract infections and kidney stones. Some common symptoms of dehydration in children are cracked lips, a dry mouth, and dark urine.

How Much Water Do Kids Need?

According to the Healthy Kids Association, the amount of water children need depends on several factors like age, size, and level of physical activity. To stay well hydrated, kids between 1 and 3 years old need approximately four cups of water (or milk) on a daily basis. Older kids between 4 and 8 years old need around five cups of water, and children above 8 need six to eight cups of water every day. 

If you are also worried that your kids don’t drink enough water throughout the day, here are a few tips that can help:

  • Make sure they carry a water bottle everywhere outside the house, especially in school.
  • Encourage them to drink water before, during, and after physical activities. 
  • If your child doesn’t like drinking water, try adding slices of various fruits like lemon and orange to their water bottle. You can also give them coconut water or electrolyte-rich beverages. 
  • Set an example by keeping yourself hydrated, as kids observe their parents very carefully. 
  • Include fruits and vegetables with high water content in their meals, such as watermelons, cucumbers, oranges, bottled gourds, and lettuce.