Are You Drinking Enough Water as a Senior?

Not getting the proper amount of water is a main reason for daytime fatigue and senior insomnia. As we get older, we have an increased need for water even though we may not always feel thirsty.

If you drink low amounts of water, then your body will actually feel less thirsty, which significantly increases the risk of becoming dehydrated.

The human body must have water for numerous reasons which includes transporting vitamins and minerals to the cells of the body and sustaining the construction of molecules.

Essential fluids are normally found within and around our body cells and in the blood vessels.

Dehydration in Senior Citizens

Dehydration takes place if you use or lose a lot more fluid than you consume and the body does not have an adequate amount of water and other fluids to perform its regular functions. If you do not replace these lost fluids, you will become dehydrated.

Dehydration is usually the result of insufficient water intake, however it can occur for several other reasons too, such as a side effect of medications, excessive sweating, or loss of blood.

Not getting the proper amount of water when out in hot weather or during exercise can also trigger dehydration. Any person can become dehydrated, though seniors and individuals with chronic health problems are at the highest risk.

Risk Factors of Dehydration

Any individual may become dehydrated if they lose a lot of fluids and don’t drink enough water to make up for it. Risk factors that can increases the possibility of dehydration include:

Factor #1: Old Age

As you become older, your body will be more vulnerable to dehydration for many reasons. A few examples include the fact that your sense of thirst becomes weaker, you can’t adjust to temperature changes as well as you used to, and the ability to preserve water is diminished.

Seniors don’t eat as often as younger adults and sometimes forget to have a drink altogether. On top of that, there are many health problems that they may have that can cause dehydration like diabetes and diarrhea.

Factor #2: Being Outside in Hot Weather

The possibility of dehydration increases drastically when you’re out in hot and humid weather.

This is because whenever the atmosphere is humid, sweat cannot escape and cool your body off as swiftly as it usually does, which can result in an elevated body temperature and an increased need for more water.

Factor #3: Chronic Conditions

Having a chronic illness such as diabetes increases your risk of dehydration greatly. Other chronic health problems like heart failure and kidney disease also increase the risk of dehydration.

Something simple like a cold can also make you more vulnerable to dehydration due to the fact you are less likely to feel like drinking anything when you’re unwell. A fever will increase the chance of dehydration even more.

 

Dehydration can lead to severe complications such as seizures, kidney failure, low blood volume shock, heat injury, brain swelling, senior migraines, and even death.

It’s very important that you get the recommended amount of water for you every single day. If you have any of the signs of dehydration, you should visit a medical professional as soon as possible to address possible problems early on.

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