This week we are highlighting hydration, again. With being cooped up in our houses, many aging adults forget to stay hydrated throughout the day. It is important for everyone to keep hydrated, especially seniors. Older adults are more susceptible to dehydration than younger adults. Dehydration occurs when the body loses more water than what is taken in.
The body is a complex system, and everyone’s body is different. This means symptoms of dehydration can be different for everyone. Some of the symptoms include:
· Dry mouth or tongue
· Skin becomes less elastic
· Blood pressure decreases
· Concentrated urine
· Increased heartbeat
· Muscle spasms
· Difficulty breathing
· Kidney problems
· Loss of balance
Unfortunately, many older adults do not drink fluids often in fear of needing to go to the bathroom more often. In the process of aging, thirst perception may decrease, which makes older adults not feel thirsty so they don’t drink when they should.
If you are a family member, friend, or caregiver, you should encourage and remind your loved ones to drink fluids, even if they aren’t thirsty.
Here are some ways to increase fluids within the body:
· Drinking throughout the day – water, flavored sparkling water, or low sodium broth,
· If having diarrhea or vomiting, replace your electrolytes by drinking sports drinks, such as:
PowerAde or Gatorade.
· Eat foods higher in water content, such as: cucumbers, celery, lettuce, watermelon,
strawberries, cantaloupe, or soup.
· If you don’t like plain water, squeeze a lemon or lime into the water or make flavored ice
cubes to be added to the water.
Sometimes, drinking a full glass at a time can be difficult for an older adult. An easier way to receive the fluids needed is to take small sips throughout the day is to keep water, Gatorade, or the drink of your choice near you throughout the day so staying hydrated is easier.
If you or your loved one has difficulty holding a glass, cups with handles or straws make it easier to lift and drink. Cups with lids allow a person with shaky hands to drink without the fear of spilling. Remember, when leaving the house, bring a bottle of water with you.
If you would like to learn about what we offer here at Christ the King Manor or how we could help you, please check out: https://www.ctkmanor.org/services
Author: Christ the King Manor