Winter may be a great time for kids as they get to enjoy their winter vacations. They get to stay cuddled up in bed while they watch their favourite cartoon shows and enjoy hot chocolate drinks. But winter can also be a time when parents must keep a keen eye on how much liquid their kids are consuming as they can get easily dehydrated. Read this article to find out how you can keep your kids hydrated in winters.
What causes dehydration?
There are many causes of dehydration and some of them are because of common mistakes we make with our lifestyle. The most basic reason for dehydration during the cold months is suddenly stepping outdoors in the chilly air after staying inside our home which is comfortably warmer. Physical activity and exercise can dehydrate you in the winter just as much as in the summer, or maybe more due the lack of humidity in the air. Not drinking enough water, a lack of liquids, wearing huge bulky clothes and not following a proper diet are other reasons for dehydration during the cold months.
Symptoms of dehydration
We often don’t realise that our body is dehydrated unless we feel a great urge to quench our thirst or when we realise that our urine is bright or dark yellow in colour. Other symptoms of dehydration include continuous yawning, hunger – although you ate a huge meal just an hour ago, certain parts of your body may start to ache without no logical explanation and you could also be left slightly confused. When people are dehydrated they also complain of headaches, mood swings, and dry skin.
How to keep your kids hydrated in winters
Here are a few tips on how you can keep your kids hydrated in winters:
1. Dress your baby in layers
Did you know that sweating can reduce the body’s temperature? This means that our heart is required to work harder to maintain the blood flow and regulate body temperature. The best way to avoid this is to dress your baby in layers. This helps in absorbing perspiration and keeping your baby warm and hydrated.
2. Include fruits in his diet
What do you normally prepare for your little one for breakfast, lunch and dinner? Are you including a bowl of fruit with every meal? If no, this is a practice that you must start right away. Winter fruits are excellent sources of water and can keep your child hydrated. Did you know that apples are about 84% of water and cucumbers are basically 95% water?
3. Don’t forget the liquids
The best way of staying hydrated is simply to drink a lot of water. However, due to the cold weather, we often don’t feel thirsty and forget to drink water. Keep a track on how much water your baby is drinking and increase the quantity if you think it is too little. You can also give your child liquids like coconut water, fruit juices or even smoothies as an evening snack.
4. Invest in a humidifier
During the cold months, our indoors tend to become dry as we use room heaters. If you are using a heater, a humidifier can help reduce the dryness and retain some moisture in the room. If you don’t want to buy a humidifier, place a few indoor plants in your kid’s room.
5. Choose room temperature drinks
When serving drinks to your kid, ensure that they are slightly warm or at room temperature. Cold liquids can be absorbed quicker. Drinks served at room temperature are better at keeping the body’s internal temperature ideal.
6. Increase salt in your baby’s foods
Another great way to keep your kids hydrated in winters is to feed them foods that contain a good amount of salt. Foods that contain salt helps the body retain water. You can try making different kinds of soups and vegetables broths, depending on which vegetables your child enjoys eating. The easiest soup you can try is the tomato soup.
7. Choose lukewarm water for baths
It’s a wonderful feeling to take hot water showers in the winters, but, if possible, use lukewarm water to rinse off body parts like the face and hands to avoid stripping away many oils from the skin. To keep your kid’s skin hydrated, use a moisturiser that is specifically designed for the cold months. Lotions made of natural ingredients like lavender, chamomile and jojoba are great for winters.
8. Let your kids play outdoors
If you are decreasing your child’s playtime because you don’t want him to be outside for a long time, maybe you should reconsider your decision. Staying inside the room all day with the heater turned on the whole time can actually dry you and your children out. Allow the moisture from outside naturally penetrate into your child’s body.
9. Feed your child potassium rich foods
Although bananas may seem like more of a summer fruit, it is quite beneficial for winter as well. Bananas are full of potassium and potassium helps transport water throughout the body. Other foods which are great sources of potassium are spinach, peas, brussel sprouts and sweet potatoes.