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Drink to Your Health

Drink To Your Health

Dehydration is a real threat for seniors. Total body water decreases as we age, so seniors become dehydrated faster than the rest of us. Unfortunately, older people often don’t get thirsty (another thing lost with age), so they don’t drink enough. Certain medications even increase the risk of dehydration. Incontinence can also contribute to dehydration, especially since fear of having an accident often leads to drinking less.

Some of the early warning signs of dehydration:

  • Thirst. When you feel thirsty, your body is already slightly dehydrated

  • Dark urine. If you’re drinking enough, it should be light colored

  • Headaches

  • Dry skin

  • Sunken eyes

  • Cramps

  • Fatigue, dizziness or confusion.

Some of these signs are so subtle they are often overlooked or confused with other conditions, leaving the senior in a dangerous situation or even hospitalized. Dehydration can lead to constipation, urinary tract infections, kidney failure and other health problems.

Here are a few things you can do to help reduce the risk of dehydration in your elderly parents:

  • Offer water throughout the day, or simply bring them a glass of water. They might be more inclined to drink it if it’s right there.

  • Keep a water bottle by their bedside and near where they frequently sit.

  • Encourage them to drink a full glass of water when they take their medications.

  • Add lemons, limes or other fruits to their beverages if they get tired of drinking plain water.

  • Offer fruits with a high water content like watermelon or oranges.

  • Have them limit caffeine, alcohol and sugary drinks.

Also remember that if they are sick  —  particularly with a fever  —  their risk of dehydration increases, especially since they may not feel like drinking at all.

Knowing the signs and symptoms of dehydration can help keep seniors safe!

SYNERGY HomeCare

SYNERGY HomeCare is the premier provider of home care services. We strive to offer our clients the highest quality of life and independence possible. Call us today for a FREE in-home care assessment (877) 432-2692.

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