Older adults are at a greater risk for becoming dehydrated because their bodies naturally contain less fluid. In addition, they are more likely to be taking certain medications that may have dehydration as a side effect. Now, a new study shows that there may be an additional risk factor for dehydration—lack of sleep.
About the Study.
While scientists have studied the way sleep affects health in a number of ways, there have been few studies that have looked at how it impacts fluid levels in the body. Recently, a researcher named Asher Rosinger, Ph.D., an assistant professor at Pennsylvania State University in State College, led a team of researchers in examining data gathered from two other large studies. The data they looked at included information for 20,000 healthy adults. The participants had given urine samples and answered questions about their sleeping habits.
The researchers used the urine to look for two markers that indicate dehydration. They then compared that information to data gathered from the questionnaires. They discovered that the participants who typically slept 6 or fewer hours per night had more highly concentrated urine than people who slept 8 hours.
Tips for Preventing Dehydration in Older Adults.
Based on the results of the study, helping your aging relative to get more sleep may reduce their risks of becoming dehydrated. Some additional tips for preventing dehydration are:
- Purchase a refillable water bottle for the senior. Encourage them to keep it with them throughout the day. They will be more likely to drink if water is easily available.
- Offer foods that contain liquids, such as soup and some fruits, like watermelon.
- Remind the senior to drink more before, during, and after exercise, which may deplete fluids through sweating.
- Provide extra water during illnesses, especially those that involve fever, diarrhea, or vomiting.
- Keep plenty of liquids on hand when the older adult is in hot weather.
- Avoid skipped meals since older adults get some of their liquid intake from foods.
- Stay away from high-protein drinks (unless otherwise instructed by a doctor) and alcohol. These kinds of drinks can cause dehydration.
- Remind the senior that they should drink even if they don’t feel thirsty.
An elderly care provider can help your aging relative to avoid dehydration. Elderly care providers can make sure the older adult keeps a water bottle with them and refill it throughout the day. Elderly care providers can also prepare foods that have liquids in them and watch for signs of dehydration and make sure your loved one gets help if needed.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elderly care in Sonoma, CA, call At Your Service Home Care. Call today! (707) 573-1003
She became a discharge planner and immediately fell in love with the concept of home care and the autonomous clinical practice it affords nurses. Dr. Lucy was hooked and has been a strong supporter of home care ever since.Believing people need advocates in healthcare systems, she has championed that cause across the acute care and post-acute care setting.
Dr. Lucy has worked in every aspect of home care from Medicare Certified, DME, Infusion, Hospice and finally Private Duty/Private Pay services. She also works as a home care consultant across the country and as a legal nurse consultant for the home care industry.
Having worked in all areas of home care, Dr. Lucy has a well-rounded perspective of the challenges facing patients, families and the home care industry, and as a provider she advocates for patients through the maze of health care services. Dr. Lucy celebrated over 37 years as a nurse and patient advocate.
Dr. Lucy has a Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing from Lewis University, Romeoville, Illinois.In 1994, she received her Masters of Science in Health Service Administration from St. Mary's University, Moraga, California. Dr. Lucy received her Doctor of Nursing Practice awarded in 2016, graduating with Distinction and a 4.0 GPA.
She did her doctoral work on the global dementia crisis, aging and prevention strategies for healthy living. Developed dementia and Alzheimer's disease plans for aging patients leaving the hospital setting or entering long-term care or home health and hospice environments. She also developed a specialized program for those at risk for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
In 1992, Dr. Lucy was designated CAHSAH Certified Home Care Administrator in the inaugural offering of this designation through the California Association for Health Services at Home (CAHSAH).
She is the founder and CEO of Creative Solutions Home Care Consulting Services and At Your Service Nursing & Home Care, a concierge nursing & home care agency that provides the services she believes are essential for seniors to age in place.She offers a higher level of care allowing people to be in their own homes with an emphasis on independence, safety, and quality of life.
Dr. Lucy is the Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for the National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC) and sits on the Board of Directors for California Association for Health Services at Home (CAHSAH).
She has served on the boards for both state and national board associations, and is currently on the following boards and committees: Board of Directors, California State Association for Health Services at Home (CAHSAH), 2002-present, National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC's) Private Duty Home Care Association Director, and multiple state and national home care committees.
Dr. Lucy goes to Washington, DC, several times a year to advocate for senior services and home care issues. She was past Commissioner for the Sonoma Commission on Human Rights.She is past chair of the local Senior Advocacy Services.
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