The importance of water to health as well as survival is discussed in schools even during the early days of schooling. Children are even taught that one should drink eight 8 ounces of water each day. They are aware that two-thirds of their body is made up of water, and everything that they do is very much dependent on their hydration level. Even then, children remain to be at risk of dehydration when they are in school. What is more concerning is that they know even recognize the early stages of dehydration. But if they have one of the best water bottles with them all the time, it may be a different story.
Reasons why your child may not be drinking enough in school
Having kids to be drinking sufficient amounts of water while attending a full day of classes in school can be very challenging to monitor and to do. As the hydration level of every child varies and will be dependent on a lot of factors (age, sex, weight, drinking preferences, activity, environment), it may be difficult to gauge whether a young student is kept properly hydrated at all times.
Though there may be schools with drinking facilities, there could still be other reasons why children may not be drinking much as they should. Most of these water sources are located outside of the classroom. A child who is busy attending class or are just plain exhausted, will not ask permission to go to the water fountain or water station to get a drink. Even if a water source may be situated near the classroom, the drink may not be cold and clean. This also reduces a child’s interest to drink water. Plus, the fact that children nowadays prefer sweetened drinks like soft drinks and other packaged drinks, their desire to drink water will be affected in this case.
If your child is not drinking enough, he or she may be at risk of dehydration.
In addition to this, a child’s drinking mechanism is not fully functioning at their age. They may also mistake thirst for hunger or may be asking for water when they are already dehydrated. Once that happens about two to three percent of your child’s body weight has lost water.
Stages of dehydration in children
A child who becomes restless for no apparent reason and may be showing signs of increased thirst may be showing signs of mild dehydration. If the child becomes even more restless and irritable, have sunken eyes, a less elastic skin, looks tired or sleepy, or has a dry mouth, the child may be showing signs of moderate dehydration. A child with severe dehydration, on the other hand, will show the previously stated signs of dehydration and will also have a rapid heartbeat, have a slow pulse, will be lethargic, and have a fever. Seizures and shock will also be apparent in children with severe hydration. It is crucial that they are given immediate medical attention.
Encourage young students to drink more when in school.
The British Nutrition Foundation recommends water as the only fluid that should be consumed more than other drinks as it hydrates without calories that most sugar-coated drinks have.
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) sets the following fluid requirements for children of various ages:
- Boys and girls aged 4 to 8 years should consume 6 liters of fluid from drinks and food, and about 1.1-1.3 liters of fluid from drinks only;
- Girls aged 9 to 13 years should consume 9 liters of fluid from drinks and food, and about 1.3-1.5 liters of fluid from drinks only;
- Boys aged 9 to 13 years should consume 1 liters of fluid from drinks and food, and about 1.5-1.7 liters of fluid from drinks only.
Children should be drinking water throughout the day as they are active the whole time. It is crucial that they stay hydrated as this will keep them mentally and physically alert.
Tips on how to encourage your child to stay hydrated in school
One way to encourage your child to drink water in school is to train him or her to bring a reusable water bottle to school every day. The child should also be reminded of the benefits of drinking water throughout the day. Remind your child that even if she might not be engaging in sports or doing much while in school, her body continuously loses water when he or she breathes, urinate, perspire. If the child doesn’t drink he/she will get dehydrated.
It is also a good way to encourage a child to drink more starting in the morning with his or her breakfast. Encourage your child to drink up while at home. If the child prefers a flavorful drink, you can squeeze some lemon into the child’s drink. Putting curly straws or storing the child’s drink in an interestingly designed water bottle or one with the child’s favorite color will also increase the child’s interest in drinking fluid.
Repeated tasting of water will also help develop a desire for water. Your child may also look up to you as a model, so you can show him or her that you are regularly drinking water as well and that you value proper hydration, too.
Choose the best reusable water bottle for school
If you can find one of the best water bottles for school that will fit your child’s requirement it will also help encourage your child to drink up and stay hydrated throughout the day. You can find several bottles with features that will make your child even more excited to bring his or her own reusable water bottle to school.
When choosing the best water bottle for school, consider the size, shape, design, material from which the bottle is made of, safety features, as well as the reviews that may be available for such brand and design of water bottle. There are several water bottles that can keep liquids, either hot or cold, for a longer period of time. There are also reusable water bottles that are spill and moist-free. Look for the best options, so you can have the best value for your money.