But, in later life, it is very common to lose the awareness and sensation of thirst. Your residents can benefit immensely from gentle reminders throughout the day to remind them to stay hydrated. This is especially important for residents with dementia as they often forget to drink, putting them at higher risk of dehydration.
Staying hydrated is vital to good health, it helps to regulate body temperature and many bodily functions, including blood pressure, brain function, the digestive system, kidney function, bladder and bowel.
Top 5 tips to increase hydration among residents
- Include foods such as soups, jelly, custard, ice cream, yoghurt and pureed fruits in your daily menu.
- Set up hydration stations around the home.
- Have a social "happy hour" where drinks are offered and invite family members or friends.
- Find out each resident's favourite drink and offer this first.
- Offer regular drinks every 1.5 hours by day.