For kids, summer is a time to be outside, play with friends from sunrise to sunset, and explore the neighborhood on bikes without a care in the world. But with so much time spent with friends and less under the watchful eye of parents, kids have a tendency to run themselves into the ground by skipping rest, snacks, and water in favor of one more cannonball.
Unfortunately, skipping water can have dangerous consequences for kids, especially if they’re very young. Children are more susceptible to dehydration than adults are because children’s bodies don’t cool down as effectively, and water (besides quenching your thirst) works as a cooling mechanism. Dehydrated children may show extreme lethargy, and they may also vomit or become unresponsive. Severe dehydration can be life-threatening for children.
Luckily, preventing dehydration is as easy as ensuring your child drinks enough water throughout the day and monitoring him or her for signs of dehydration. Here are a few ways to keep your child hydrated during hot summer weather.
Get Them A Kids Stainless Steel Water Bottle
We love stainless steel kids water bottles in the summer because of their double-wall vacuum insulation, which keeps drinks cold and ice frozen for hours in even the hottest weather. Fill your child’s water bottle up with ice and water in the morning, then ensure they’ve finished it all before they come in for lunch. Refill again at lunch for afternoon activities, then finish the day with one final water bottle with dinner.
Of course, if kids are active and outdoors in hot weather all day, they should be drinking frequently and getting lots of refills from you or the water fountain. The simple act of having a kids water bottle on hand will remind them to drink. If you or another adult are supervising, make sure to encourage the kids to take water breaks. If you’re at the pool, adult swim is a great time for this; having snacks on hand at the park or another outdoor activity helps ensure kids are staying hydrated and fed.
Be Smart About Snacks
Instead of loading up on salty, dehydrating snacks for kids, pack fresh fruit and vegetables that are high in water content. These healthy snacks are a strong improvement over the usual processed foods in the pantry, and they’ll keep your kids satisfied without overloading them on sugar. Most importantly, eating foods with a high water content will help your children stay hydrated in the hot sun.
Freeze Juice in Cubes
Looking for a fun, colorful way to get your child excited about drinking water? Put away the juices boxes and freeze juice in ice cube trays in your freezer! That way, your kids will enjoy a little more flavor in their water, but you’ll be satisfied knowing they aren’t accidentally drinking tons of sugar. One caveat: try to rely on juices that have no added sugar (like high fructose corn syrup), which adds empty calories.
Monitor How Much They Drink
The easiest way to know if your child is hydrated is by keeping an eye on their kids water bottle levels throughout the day. Equip your kid with a water bottle with transparent sides so you can know how much they’ve been drinking all day with a quick glance.
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