Have you ever noticed that every pediatrician, just examining the child with symptoms of colds, even before the results of tests necessarily recommend to observe a regime of drinking?
Some parents are of the opinion that you should not force your baby to drink. If he does not want to drink, let him not drink – the baby is not his enemy, and his body knows best what he needs. However, this is completely wrong: drinking plenty of fluids is essential for a quicker recovery.
“In fact, everything is simple: if viruses have penetrated the body, one of the conditions for a quick recovery is to expel them. Liquid liquefies mucus and sputum, improving coughing up and expectoration. Another issue is a high fever. In order for the baby to sweat well and the fever to drop naturally, the body needs a lot of fluid. If it is not enough, dehydration can occur.
Note that in a child’s body dehydration occurs more quickly than in adults. It can be recognized by the following signs:
- Fatigue and irritability;
- Dry mouth;
- sunken eyes;
- Fewer tears during crying;
- decreased frequency of urination.
If you notice these symptoms in your child, you should be sure to normalize the drinking regimen and consult your pediatrician.
What to drink?
This, in fact, is not so important. Doctors agree that almost all liquids are good for a sick child. You can give your baby any of the following:
- fruit juice, morsels;
- homemade compote;
- warm tea;
It is better to choose juices with minimal sugar content or dilute them with water. It is also recommended to avoid liquids containing caffeine, strong carbonated and sweet drinks with dyes. However, do not be too categorical in this matter: if now the child agrees to drink only sweet water, let him. Believe me, it is better than dehydration.
How much to drink?
“The amount of fluid a child’s body should receive each day depends on the age and weight of the child. On average, children under 4 years should drink about 1 liter, kids aged 4-8 years – 1.1-1.3 liters, 9-13 years – 1.3-1.5 liters, and from 14 years and older – more than 1.5 liters. However, note that this is a generalized rate for healthy children: they need to drink more during illness.
In addition to water, juices and other drinks, the baby can get fluids from food. For example, you can feed your child first meals and add cucumbers, iceberg lettuce, celery, and other fruits and vegetables with high fluid content to his or her diet.
How to drink?
“In fact, there is no specific drinking regime for a child, the main thing is to have time to restore the reserves of fluids that the body uses up. The best indicator of normal rehydration is regular urination by the child. If a baby regularly goes to the toilet to urinate, and the amount and color of urine does not change, everything is normal. And one more tip: give a child to drink lukewarm fluid, so that it is absorbed by the body faster.
And finally, the hardest part: how to get a baby who refuses to drink? Colds and the flu suppress appetite, so parents will need to be smart to give their baby something to drink.
Up to six months, a newborn does not need water at all – he gets all the necessary substances and fluids from his mother’s milk. From six months of age, you can feed your baby from a bottle, and if the baby refuses to drink on their own, during illness you can give him from a disposable syringe without a needle.
If you cannot persuade an older baby to drink water, you can get him drunk through play. Here are a few tips that may help:
- Speed Drinking – who will drink a glass of juice or a cup of tea faster.
- New utensils – offer your child to drink from a different cup or sports bottle.
- Cocktail straws – most children are willing to drink anything with a straw.
- Ice – some kids just love ice. Of course, it is better to add it to hot drinks so as not to drink your baby cold.
- Potion with dragon berries – offer your child to become a sorcerer and brew a potion: pour water into a pot, add your favorite berries or jam and call it something unusual (you can connect it with cartoon characters, etc.).
School-aged children and older need to explain why you need to drink water, and try to negotiate with them.
Does your baby drink enough water when he is sick?