When Should Babies Drink Water?
Despite water being the go-to drink for health, there are limitations when it comes to babies. In this post we explore the dangers.
Allowing babies to drink too much water can lead to what is known as water intoxication. Also known as ‘water poisoning’ or ‘hyperhydration’, this is a disturbance in ‘brain functions’, which can occur when too many electrolytes from ‘excessive water intake’ are present within the body.
Due to a child’s small body mass, it is very easy for this to occur, especially when they are under 9 months of age.
Dr. Jennifer Anders tell us that at such a young age the babies’ kidneys aren’t yet mature and that allowing them to drink a lot of water can, ”Cause their bodies to release sodium along with excess water.”
This loss of sodium is what can negatively impact brain function and ultimately lead to symptoms of water intoxication.
Water Intoxication can be a sneaky kind of condition, meaning great care should be taken to avoid any chance in the first place.
Why Should Babies Stick to Milk?
While drinking water can be dangerous for babies, it is still beneficial for a child as it is for all of us – we must do this in the right way.
The World Health Organisation notes that babies don’t need to be topped up with water to ensure their health as breast milk is already 80% water.
This provides a child with everything they need at such a young age. Parents who decide or who need to use formula can rest assured that their child will receive the same benefits.
Furthermore, feeding babies water can lead to them being disinterested in breast milk or formula, contributing to weight loss and other negative effects, such as improper growth.
Diluting a child’s formula milk can also be dangerous, leading to the baby feeling unwell or in worst cases, suffering from the above problems.
When Can Babies Drink Water Properly?
Many sources such as PregnancyBirth&Baby tell us that water can be introduced into a baby’s diet as early as 6 months, but only in particularly small quantities (2 to 4 ounces).
The best way to introduce the water into the babies’ diet is through the same means as formula. This can come with its own challenges for mothers who breastfeed as the child may not be used to drinking from a cup.
By the age of 12 months, children should be well on their way to be run of the mill water drinkers. Children can now begin to increase their water intake to 8 ounces. This amount can be consumed in correspondence with age (E.G: A one-year-old child would have one 8 ounces of water, a two-year-old child would have two cups and so on).
He or she can also begin to drink water alongside solid foods. Not only does this get them used to drinking water as a part of their diet, but it also aids in bodily function – reducing the risk of constipation.
If you have a baby or small child at home, beginning to take their first steps into the world of water, make sure it’s as fresh and clean as can be.
Give us a call on 01462 455772. We will be happy to chat about getting quality water filtration into your home.
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