Keeping Your Baby Hydrated During the Summer

19 November, 2020
Keeping your baby hydrated is important and, although it seems like a simple task, it isn't always so. Do you know how much water they need? Find out more about it.

Keeping your baby hydrated during the summer is no different than meeting the needs of any other child. It does have some peculiarities though. For instance, situations such as diarrhea and vomiting require special care and, therefore, a greater intake of water.

Read on to find out more about things you should keep in mind and how to identify the symptoms of dehydration in young children.

Keeping your baby hydrated during summer

First of all, adequate skin hydration in babies is important.

In fact, the Sociedad Española de Inmunología Clínica, Alergología y Asma Pediátrica (SEICAP) explains  that it prevents atopic dermatitis. This is a clinical picture characterized, among other things, by dryness that results in injuries and risks of infection.

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Hydration of a baby in normal situations

The adequacy of a baby’s hydration is partly related to the type of feeding under pleasant weather conditions. Breastfed babies don’t need more water but those on formula or porridge should receive an additional amount.

A baby breastfeeding.

A doctor can advise you on how to start complementary feeding, incorporating fruits and vegetables, from the age of 6 months. These foods contain water, although they must advise you on their intake so that the child gets into the habit.

How much is too much? How little is too little?

Knowing the amount of water needed by babies is no easy task so you must consult a doctor about it.

How do they determine it though? Well, according to research conducted by Miguel Angel Rodriguez-Weber and collaborators:

  • Special considerations are necessary to calculate the water requirements in newborns and infants. However, all their needs should be covered with breast milk or formula.
How to keep a baby hydrated during summer.

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  • Likewise, the authors point out that water requirements can be calculated according to the calories consumed (100 mL per 100 kcal). In this line, they also warn that the hotter it is, the higher the intake must be.
  • In addition, one must take into account this consideration when infants have a more intense physical activity in the case of older children. This need shouldn’t be covered by sugary or energy drinks though.

Some common mistakes related to water intake in a baby

The researchers reaffirm that complications can occur due to incorrect preparation of the milk formula in newborns. In this respect, it’s important to clear up any doubts, as doing it wrong could lead to intoxication or malnutrition.

Likewise, when the formula is more concentrated than it should be, it could lead to dehydration and hypernatremia (which corresponds to the increase of sodium in the blood).

Some signs to identify possible dehydration in a baby

Early detection can make a difference when there are symptoms of dehydration in babies. Thus, specialists warn of the following symptoms:

  • Restlessness, drowsiness, or irritability
  • Cold or sweaty skin
  • Low energy levels; the child is weak and sleepy
  • Scarcity or absence of tears during crying; also, the volume is lower than usual
  • Dry mouth or tongue
  • Sunken eyes, as well as the soft spot (fontanel) on the head
  • A decrease in the amount of urine but more concentrated

Dehydration can have serious consequences in an infant. This is why you must immediately consult a doctor at the slightest suspicion so they can evaluate the situation.

Keeping your baby hydrated during their development

You mustn’t ignore the amount of water a baby needs, especially during the summer. It’s just as harmful to drink too little as to drink too much.

Finally, it’s essential to discuss a baby’s water requirements with your health care provider. What’s more, we suggest you follow up on any questions. The good care of the youngest is vital for their development.

  • Rodríguez-Weber MÁ, Arredondo-García JL, García-de la Puente S, González-Zamora JF, López-Candiani C. Consumo de agua en pediatría. Acta pediátrica de México. 2013;34(2):96-101.
  • Una adecuada hidratación de la piel en bebés podría prevenir la dermatitis atópica. Sociedad Española de Inmunología Clínica, Alergología y Asma Pediátrica. 2017. http://www.seicap.es/es/una-adecuada-hidrataci%C3%B3n-de-la-piel-en-beb%C3%A9s-podr%C3%ADa-prevenir-la-dermatitis-at%C3%B3pica_47880.
  • Manz, F. (2007). Hydration in Children. Journal of the American College of Nutrition. https://doi.org/10.1080/07315724.2007.10719659
  • Patricia Solo-Josephson, MD (2017). Deshidratación. The Nemours Foundation. https://kidshealth.org/es/parents/dehydration-esp.html.