How Much Water Should a Toddler Drink? Your Guide
As parents, we want what’s best for our kids. But sometimes, it can be hard to know the right answers. For example, we often hear parents ask “How much water should a toddler drink?” And it can be a struggle to get a small toddler to eat or drink the right amount — especially if you have a picky eater or drinker.
Fortunately, getting your toddler to drink the right amount doesn’t have to be a battle. Here, you’ll learn how much water a toddler should drink and why fluids are vital. Plus, you’ll find tips to make drinking water easier for children.
How Much Water Should a Toddler Drink?
How much water should a toddler drink? An easy rule of thumb is one 8-ounce glass of water for every year of age, with a maximum of 64 ounces at eight years old. For example, a toddler that is one year old should consume 8 ounces of water a day. A 3-year-old should consume 24 ounces of water per day. A toddler that’s four years old should drink 32 ounces of water a day (or four 8-ounce cups of water).
The water can come from a variety of sources, including plain water, breast milk, and fruit drinks. Whole milk, low-fat milk, and non-fat milk are also good choices. Toddlers can also get water from solid foods that have a high water content including watermelon and other whole fruits.
There’s also a difference between making sure your child gets enough water and making sure they avoid dehydration. That’s because hydration isn’t just about water. Your child also needs electrolytes to stay hydrated and function properly. Electrolytes like potassium and magnesium enable nerve and muscle function. Your doctor can tell if your child has an electrolyte deficiency and recommend the proper amounts depending on your child’s weight and activity level.
Talk to your pediatrician to determine how much water your child needs. While these rules are general guidelines, a doctor can formulate a hydration plan specifically to fit your toddler’s needs. The doctor will take into account your child’s activity level and your child’s diet to determine the right daily water and electrolyte amounts.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) also recommends limiting sugary drinks as much as possible. These include 100 percent fruit juice (4-6 ounces per day maximum), sports drinks, sodas, and energy drinks. These beverages contain large amounts of sugar that can be harmful to your child’s well-being.
One easy way to ensure your toddler drinks enough fluids is to portion out their daily liquids and electrolytes in the morning. For example, you can fill one sippy cup or water bottle in the morning for your one-year-old toddler. Then, ensure the bottle is empty by the end of the day. You can also serve water or other fluids at mealtimes. You also want to increase your child’s fluid intake when they’re playing or exerting themselves.
Why Kids Need Water and Electrolytes
Like adults, kids need water and electrolytes to function properly. That’s because our organs use fluids and electrolytes for basic function. In fact, fluids and electrolytes play a role in muscle movement, brain function, and heart health. Without enough fluids, dehydration can set in. Dehydration is a condition that occurs when your child’s body doesn’t get the right amounts of fluids and electrolytes.
That’s why it’s not just about drinking plenty of water. Kids need electrolytes like calcium and potassium to stay healthy and hydrated. Dehydration can be life-threatening if left untreated.
Fortunately, the best way to manage and avoid dehydration is to use an oral rehydration solution. Oral rehydration solutions were developed by scientists in the 1960s to treat life-threatening dehydration.
These solutions combine precise amounts of sodium electrolytes and glucose. The amounts are about three times as many electrolytes and half as much sugar as you’d find in a sports drink. Combined, these ingredients trigger the sodium-glucose cotransport system, which pulls in water and electrolytes to defeat dehydration fast.
For a long time, traditional ORS formulations were unpalatable — especially for children — due to a large amount of sodium. Upon seeing children spit out the life-saving formulas, Dr. Dolhun knew something had to change. So, he created DripDrop to solve the ORS taste problem without compromising efficacy.
How to Recognize Dehydration in Children
Young children are more susceptible to dehydration because they are still developing. Even small changes in hydration status can lead to dehydration in kids. Knowing the signs of dehydration in children allows you to recognize the problem and act fast.
Signs of mild to moderate dehydration in kids include:
Decreased urination and fewer wet diapers
Few or no tears when crying
Dry skin and dry mouth
Signs of severe dehydration in kids include:
Sunken soft spot (called a fontanelle)
If you recognize these dehydration signs, it’s important to act fast to relieve the condition from worsening.
Make Drinking Water Fun With DripDrop
How much water should a toddler drink? Your toddler needs various amounts of fluids depending on their activity level, diet, and age. In general, you can plan for one 8-ounce glass for each year of age. Children ages eight and up (including adolescents) should drink a maximum of 64 ounces of water per day.
If your young children don’t like to drink water, there are still ways to encourage their water intake. By using DripDrop, you can make water taste better AND ensure your child gets the right amount of fluids and electrolytes.
Doctor-developed DripDrop allows you to alleviate mild to moderate dehydration outside of a hospital setting, without the need for costly and painful IV therapy. Our unique formula is powerful enough to help patients suffering from dehydration caused by Ebola and cholera, but safe enough for everyday use. Plus, DripDrop tastes amazing and comes in a variety of flavors you can enjoy.
For cases of mild to moderate dehydration, DripDrop is a fast, effective, and great-tasting remedy. The convenient packaging allows you to have DripDrop when you need it, where you need it.