It’s too easy for elderly adults to suffer from dehydration in the summer months.
In seniors, heat and humidity bring more stress to the body, causing it to lose precious fluids. When someone takes in fewer fluids than their body is losing, it creates a state of dehydration. Elderly adults can experience significant health issues if they are dehydrated for too long. Family caregivers and senior care providers must increase their influence with the aging adult when it comes to staying healthy and hydrated all summer.
Signs of Dehydration in Seniors
It’s easy to see how dehydration can happen in the elderly, but it is much harder to spot the symptoms. Family caregivers and in-home care providers should become familiar with the signs of dehydration in the elderly so they can take appropriate steps to correct the condition before it becomes a true health hazard.
Here are a few of the most common signs of dehydration in the elderly:
• Dry mouth
• Low blood pressure
• Rapid heartbeat
• Sunken eyes and loose skin
• Low urine output
• Dark colored urine
• No sweat or tears
• Confusion and fatigue
If a family caregiver or elder care provider suspects dehydration in the aging adult, they should try to hydrate immediately and set up a visit to a doctor as soon as possible.
Preventing Dehydration Throughout the Summer
Family caregivers can do a lot to help prevent dehydration in their aging loved ones, and elderly care providers can help, too. The obvious answer is to drink more water, but this is not always so easy with seniors. Many fear to increase their fluids due to incontinence issues and some are simply stubborn and don’t want to. Family caregivers can provide a water bottle that they can sip throughout the day and encourage drinks with regular snacks.
It doesn’t always have to be water that provides fluids for seniors. Tea, juice, sports drinks, soup, and a frozen ice treat also deliver fluids to the body. Other foods that help with hydration include celery, watermelon, cucumber, pineapple, apples, pears, eggplant, lettuce, and berries. By paying attention to meal ingredients and snacks, family caregivers can hydrate their aging loved ones without overdoing it on the water.
Seniors need help from their family caregivers and elder care providers to stay hydrated when it gets hot out there.
They should avoid staying in a hot place or in the sun for too long as they will lose a lot of fluids via sweating. Illnesses can also contribute to a fluid loss, especially those that produce a fever, diarrhea or vomiting. It’s definitely worth a visit to the doctor if family caregivers feel that their aging loved one doesn’t seem like they are properly hydrated and they can do a full evaluation and get them the treatment they need.
Dehydration can be devastating to an elderly person’s body, but the good news is that it is entirely preventable. Family caregivers and elder care providers can keep seniors properly hydrated and therefore much healthier as their bodies have all the fluids they need to function properly.
Are you or a loved one considering Elderly Care in Searcy, AR? First Choice Senior Care can help. Serving all of Little Rock and Central Arkansas.
Please call and talk to our caring staff today. (501) 916-9307
Kayla believes in advocating for and educating seniors and their families on a variety of topics and issues that impact them.Reflecting on the need for an independent home care provider interested in quality over quantity, she chased her dream of building her own company that would make a significant difference in the lives of seniors, providing a much-needed service in her own local community.
Kayla holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Arkansas State University, is licensed by the state of Arkansas as a Long-Term Care Administrator, and is a Certified Senior Adviser.
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