Seniors And Winter Dehydration

We are often told we should drink more water, and guidelines for athletes talk about specific amounts, timing and strategies for hydration, but how much water do we actually need?

“When it comes to drinking water,” says Kevin Johnson, MD, medical director of Strickland Family Medicine Center, “I recommend that adults drink at least 64 ounces each day. For children and teens, take their weight in pounds, cut that number in half, and that’s the number of ounces they need for good hydration.”

Using this formula, a 70-pound child would need 35 ounces of water per day.

For the elderly, staying hydrated is especially important.

Gwinnett Medical Group Geriatrician Stephanie Garrett, MD, urges the elderly to pay special attention to hydration. “According to the American Geriatrics Society, dehydration is the most common fluid or electrolyte disturbance in the elderly,” she says. “This is often due to a decreased thirst or from eating and drinking less at meals.”

Dehydration is a major cause for hospitalization in people over age 65, Even if it’s not hot outside, the low humidity of winter’s indoor heating can dehydrate an elderly person faster than expected.

How GMC Can Help

Questions about hydration and staying healthy this winter? Find the perfect physician for you at gwinnettmedicalcenter.org/physician.

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