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Common Signs & Symptoms of Dehydration in Aging Adults

People of all ages are at risk for dehydration, but seniors have to be especially careful to consume enough water. Seniors tend to be less thirsty than younger adults, which puts them at greater risk of dehydration. Here are a few signs of dehydration in seniors that caregivers should watch out for. 

Dry Mouth

A dry, sticky mouth is perhaps the most common sign of dehydration in seniors, and your loved one will probably notice if his or her mouth starts to feel too dry. Make sure your loved one can access water at all times and drinks water at regular intervals throughout the day to maintain healthy hydration levels. 

Dehydration is one of several health issues seniors could face, many of which increase the need for professional in-home care. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same home care services. Toronto families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.

Decreased Urine Output

When seniors become dehydrated, they may not be able to urinate at all or pass urine that is dark in color. When seniors are properly hydrated, their renal system works more effectively. Drinking the right amount of water is one of the best ways for seniors to stay healthy and pass an adequate volume of urine. To find out how much water your loved one needs to drink per day, divide his or her body weight by 3. This is equivalent to the ounces of water he or she should drink on a daily basis.

Dizziness and Headaches

Water is required for the body to function properly. When seniors are dehydrated, the internal processes that regulate body functions start to malfunction, leading to dizziness, headaches, and confusion. If the dehydration is severe, your loved one may even fall unconscious. These symptoms are likely to manifest when your loved one is active or exposed to hot temperatures. When your loved one goes outside or exercises, he or she should always bring a bottle of water. 

Hiring a professional caregiver can prove beneficial for seniors and their family members. Caregivers can watch out for signs of dehydration, ensure seniors maintain healthy hydration levels, and offer assistance with daily tasks. Whether your elderly loved one needs part-time assistance with basic household chores or you need a break from your caregiving duties, the Toronto respite care experts at Home Care Assistance are here to help. All of our respite care services are backed with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts.

Muscle Cramps

Dehydrated seniors sometimes experience moderate to severe muscle cramps. To keep the muscles healthy, it’s important to maintain appropriate fluid balance in the body. When seniors don’t drink enough water, their fluid and electrolyte levels go down, leading to painful cramps. If you notice your loved one is experiencing frequent muscle cramps, it may be caused by dehydration. While drinking the appropriate amount of water may solve the issue over time, an ice pack may provide immediate relief. 

Dry Skin

When seniors become dehydrated, they may stop perspiring and develop dry skin. This is because water is essential for skin health, and dehydration can cause it to become thin and brittle. When dehydrated skin is pinched, it doesn’t bounce back. If you notice changes in your loved one’s skin or perspiration patterns, make sure he or she drinks more fluids.

Seniors can stave off dehydration and several other health conditions by making healthy lifestyle choices. If your elderly loved one needs help maintaining healthy habits, consider hiring a professional elderly caregiver. Toronto families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide dedicated and compassionate in-home caregivers who are trained in our holistic Balanced Care Method, which was designed to encourage seniors to exercise often, eat nutritious foods, maintain strong social ties, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity. To learn about our revolutionary in-home care plans and how they can benefit your loved one, call one of our knowledgeable Care Managers at (416) 488-8777.