Summertime is great for outdoor fun. However, one of the hidden dangers can be dehydration. Dehydration occurs when we lose more liquid than we take in. All of the fluid we lose needs to be replaced every day. Under normal conditions, thirst tells us that we need fluids; we drink water, and we do not become dehydrated. However, little ones may be too distracted playing to tell you they're thirsty or perhaps not be able to even say that they're thirsty.
Signs of dehydration include:
- Lack of sweating
- Fast heartbeat
- Less urine being produced. I.E. dry diapers, or no trips to the bathroom. Urine that is dark-colored is more concentrated, and evidence of some amount of dehydration. Clear to light yellow urine usually means your child is hydrated.
- Fewer tears. A dehydrated child cannot make tears.
- Mucous membranes, like the inside of the mouth, dry up.
If your child has any of these symptoms, give them fluids immediately. If the symptoms are severe, call your doctor and heed their advice. If they tell you to treat them at home, here are some tips to rehydrate your kids.
For the future, here are some tips to keep your kid hydrated.
- Give them small amounts of liquid frequently. That way, it's easier for them to keep it down.
- On hot days, serve "water" snacks such as celery or watermelon.
- Make sure they have plenty of breaks during playtime to rehydrate.
- Get them a cool water bottle to get them excited about drinking water.