Did you know that if you're feeling thirsty, you're already mildly dehydrated? Relying on thirst as a reminder to take a drink leaves you at risk for dehydration. So to be sure your kids are OK, look for these other signs, instead, which can indicate that a child is dehydrated:
- Dry mouth
- Cessation of sweating
- Dark yellow urine
- Anuria (lack of urine) for 12 hours (or 6 hours for infants)
- Tearless crying
- Sunken eyes
Help kids avoid becoming dehydrated by reminding them to drink often throughout the day. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends drinking about every 20 minutes if kids are active in sports, about five ounces is right for a kid weighing 88 pounds.
Water and sports drinks (drinks that contain electrolytes) are the best options for hydrating kids -- avoid sodas, juice and other fruit drinks. The National Alliance for Youth Sports recommends choosing beverages that contain 100 mg (or more) of sodium and 28 mg (or more) of potassium in an 8-ounce serving (if choosing sports drinks, watch out for high sugar content).