So I’m going to be all serious now, and add some information here about dehydration in babies. I’ve spoken often about how exclusively breastfed babies do not need extra water, no matter how hot it is and for how long, as long as you continue to feed on demand. Your baby adjusts their feeds to get what they need — babies are clever, and boobs are too! Take a look at my video here, on Facebook, for an explanation as to how this works.
That being said, I do feel like it’s also a public duty to make you all aware of the signs of dehydration in your bubba. Keep feeding, mamas, and make sure that YOU keep drinking enough!
Breastfed babies who are being fed on demand don’t need extra water 🙂 PLEASE KNOW that it can be dangerous to give water to babies under 6 months, due to a high risk of electrolyte imbalance and kidney overload — if they are struggling to remain hydrated, give more milk! Once you start offering solids, you can start offering water during mealtimes.
Please make yourselves aware of these signs of dehydration.
SIGNS OF DEHYDRATION (Call your doctor and follow their advice):
– extra fussiness due to headache and/or nausea
– dark yellow or brown urine – urine should be pale yellow
– fewer wet nappies (less than 6 in 24 hours), or nappies that show dark yellow, brown, or very strong-smelling urine (it should be pale yellow)
– ‘Sticky’ tongue and mouth. You can check the inside of their cheek — it should be wet. If sticky, they are showing signs of dehydration. If very dry, this is a sign of severe dehydration.
– Fontanelle that is clearly sunken more than usual (that soft spot on their head — have a feel now so you know what ‘normal’ is for your baby)
SEVERE DEHYDRATION (Go to the hospital):
– Lethargic, less active than usual.
– Pale skin
– Skin that doesn’t bounce back when you poke it
– No tears, dry on their tongue and inside the mouth.
– Cold hands and feet
– fast breathing, quick pulse.
– Less than 3 wet nappies in 24 hours.
If your baby shows signs of severe dehydration, go to your pediatrician or go to your closest hospital emergency department.
As with ALLLLLLL things babies, when in doubt, call your doctor. If you are really worried, then yes, ‘be that mother’ and go to the paed or the hospital! Your instincts are strong, and who cares if you are maybe a bit annoying — that’s not such a bad thing when it comes to ensuring your baby is safe. <3
Take it easy mamas, stay cool and be kind to yourselves!