Seniors are often advised to drink more water, as it helps them stave off a number of health issues. Here are five reasons hydration is so important for older adults and why they should increase their water intake.
1. Enhances Cognitive Functioning
Cognitive function is enhanced when the brain cells receive the appropriate amount of hydration. As mental processes tend to slow down with age, it becomes crucial for seniors to stay hydrated. Sufficient hydration is important for mental function, as the body and brain are mainly comprised of water. Nearly two-thirds of the brain is water, which is why confusion and fatigue are two common symptoms of dehydration. Dizziness can also arise when a senior is dehydrated, placing him or her at risk for serious falls. Seniors who drink plenty of water throughout the day provide the nourishment their brains need to function properly.
Hydration is especially important for boosting cognitive function in seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Even when families have the best intentions, caring for a senior loved one with dementia can be challenging. Fortunately, Home Care Assistance is here to help. We are a leading provider of dementia care. El Dorado County families can take advantage of our flexible and customizable care plans, and our caregivers always stay up to date on the latest developments in senior care.
2. Eases Digestive Discomfort
Digestive disorders are common in the golden years as the bodily systems begin to slow down, and hydration is the key to digestive health. Seniors with constipation or digestive discomfort should always make sure to drink plenty of water every day, as dehydration is often linked to these types of issues. Along with constipation, indigestion and gas pains can be eased by simply drinking water, which breaks down food in the digestive system and enhances the texture of stools.
3. Prevents Urinary Tract Infections
Burning pain while urinating or an urgent need to urinate is preventable by drinking enough water. Not only does water dilute bacteria and flush it out of the body, but it also boosts the functioning of the kidneys. While some seniors try to reduce their water intake to handle incontinence, this can lead to dehydration and urinary tract infections, which makes the issue worse. For this reason, doctors advise seniors to try other strategies to reduce leakage while continuing to drink the required amount of water to stay healthy.
4. Promotes Joint Health
Seniors frequently experience arthritis pain, which interferes with their quality of life. One method for alleviating the pain is to drink more water so the body has the fluids it needs to lubricate the joints. With more lubrication, seniors can experience less stiffness and pain as they move throughout the day.
Regular physical activity can also help seniors find relief from joint pain and stiffness, and a home caregiver can help your loved one exercise safely. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of homecare. You can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide an individualized care plan 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.
5. Enhances Metabolism
Seniors also metabolize water differently than younger individuals. While younger adults have the ability to regulate water balance, seniors often compromise on their water intake. For this reason, it’s important for seniors to stay vigilant about hydration.
As a family caregiver, you should make it a point to ensure your loved one is drinking enough water daily. If you’re the primary family caregiver for an elderly loved one and need additional assistance providing high-quality elderly home care, El Dorado County Home Care Assistance can help. We are a leading home care agency committed to changing the way seniors age. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner in caregiving for your aging loved one. Contact one of our experienced Care Managers today at (916) 358-3801 to learn more about our reliable in-home care services.