Dehydration in Seniors: Important Things to Consider

A huge range of medical problems may lead to dehydration. Taking into account the fact that the human body is made up of 50 percent to 65 percent water, this component is essential to virtually every single physical function in our body. Every system in our body relies on water, hence a shortage of this vital fluid can naturally result in serious consequences to our health.

 

Dehydration is, in fact, one of the leading reasons of hospitalization in seniors who are 65 or above. Worse, according to some studies, around one-half of the people hospitalized due to dehydration died inside 12 months of admission.

 

Senior citizens are at the highest risk for suffering a dehydration since the system which normally activates thirst loses its sensitivity with age. Furthermore, as you age, the amount of water in the body reduces leading to dehydration more frequently. The fluid lost due to fever or diarrhea typically affects your regular eating patterns. As humans, we can lose water in several ways.

 

Some of the body’s initial symptoms when it comes to dehydration include:

 

Thirst

Fatigue

Dry nasal regions

Reduced urine (i.e., more yellow and concentrated).

Headache

Dry mouth and lips

Vomiting

Nausea

Light-headedness when standing

Etc.

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Easy to Follow Remedies to Prevent Dehydration:

 

As with any medicine, prevention can be a crucial step when treating dehydration.

 

Fluid replacement can be a good treatment as well. These include water, soups, juice, Popsicles, puddings, milk, Kool-Aid, ice-cream, etc.

 

Reduce or completely stay away from dehydrating beverages like tea, coffee, or soft drinks. Know that even decaffeinated soft-drinks might result in dehydration. Stay away from alcohol intake as well as they can further increase the possibility of dehydration.

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In case you tend to drink unhealthy beverages, you must add plenty of water to your regular total since the dehydration due to those drinks need to be compensated with increased water intake.

 

Eat plenty of veggies and fruits that contain lots of water.

 

Drink water throughout the day in small proportions. It’s not wise to drink 64-ounces of water at one go.

 

Most seniors must start restricting fluids 1-3 hours prior to bedtime.

 

Seniors with diarrhea & vomiting must modify their eating habits and take medicines which can control the symptoms and the loss of water. Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen are good alternatives to control fever.

 

If the person becomes lethargic or confused with is uncontrolled fever, diarrhea or vomiting; or if you see any specific symptoms, medical assistance should be taken immediately.

 

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