Boomer Wellness - Successful Aging Through Education
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Summer Safety: Avoiding Dehydration

Why do we need to drink plenty of water? Doing so ensures healthier skin, helps to lubricate joints, keeps the digestive system working efficiently, and aids in promoting brain health. Most importantly, it prevents us from dehydrating. Drinking enough water, especially during the hot summer months, is important to anyone at any age. However, older adults are more prone to falling victim to the condition. The lack of ability to notice both the changes in our body temperature, and recognize thirst are risk factors for dehydration. Being familiar with the signs of this condition can help you stay safe:

  • Low blood pressure

  • Headaches

  • Increased thirst

  • Dizziness or lightheadedness

  • Dry or sticky mucous membranes in the mouth

  • Sunken eyes

  • Skin that lacks its normal elasticity and sags back into position slowly when pinched up into a fold

  • Decreased or absent urine output

  • Decreased tears

It can sometimes be difficult to remember that, as we age, we become more susceptible to becoming dehydrated. Following these simple steps can go a long way in staying safe:

  • Drink water throughout the day, even if you are not thirsty.

  • Keep beverages that you enjoy nearby, possibly pre-poured in non-breakable cups and glasses that are easy to hold and hard to tip over.

  • Consume foods high in liquids such as soups, popsicles, and gelatins. Fruits and vegetables with high water content such as watermelon, strawberries and carrots should also be consumed.

  • Drink 8 oz. of fluid every time you take medication.

Knowing the signs of dehydration, and being proactive in preventing the condition are keys to remaining healthy and safe. Taking necessary steps, as outlined above, will help you tremendously in the summer and year-round.

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