Staying Hydrated in Winter

Your body needs water to maintain its temperature both in the hot summer months, and in the cold winter months.

Not having enough fluids is a common reason for people to suffer hypothermia while engaging in outdoor activities in the winter.

Maintaining enough fluids is one way to help your body remain warmer during the winter.

Tips to Stay Hydrated in Winter

Remember to stay hydrated all day, so start first thing in the morning with a full glass of water.

Set some mini-goals for yourself throughout the day and use a clear water bottle so that you can see how well you are meeting your goals.

If you aren’t fond of plain water, infuse your water with a piece of fresh fruit. Any citrus fruit can add flavor to your water and there are infusing water bottles available that make adding fruit to your water easy.

Anything liquid helps with hydration (except alcohol and caffeinated beverages), so warm yourself up with a nice cup of tea and stay hydrated.

Stay Hydrated in Winter

Staying hydrated in winter is just as important as staying hydrated when the weather is warmer.

Dehydration is much less noticeable in the winter, making staying hydrated a bigger challenge in cold weather than in warm.

Even though temperatures are cooler, the winter typically has much drier air which can lead to dehydration.

Becoming dehydrated can make you feel sluggish or run-down. Muscle fatigue is also a consequence of dehydration.

Dehydration in winter can leave you susceptible to colds and the flu which are more common in the winter months.

Stay hydrated!

Watch for Dehydration in Your Older Relatives and Friends

It’s important to make sure older adults drink enough water every day.

Older people often do not feel thirst as quickly as a younger person does. Older adults who have difficulty communicating, should be watched for the signs of dehydration because they cannot communicate their thirst to caregivers.

If your older adult needs assistance to drink, make sure that you have glasses that are not too heavy, or too difficult to hold, and straws are sometimes ncessary to facilitate drinking without choking.

Medications such as diuretics which are commonly prescribed to older adults, can lead to dehydration.

Older adults who have a sudden change in behavior, especially if they become non-communicative, should be evaluated for dehydration. All too often dehydration is misdiagnosed as dementia.

Make sure your older adult drinks at least 8 glasses of 8 ounces of fluids a day, even if it means more trips to the bathroom. Good urine output is a sign that dehydration is being reversed.

Dehydration in older adults can be deadly. Once organ failure sets in, approximately 50% of older adults will die from it.

Drink up! Push the fluids. Save your older relative or friend’s life.