How Drinking Water Can Soothe Your Child's Anxiety

child drinking water

There’s a new report that suggests drinking a glass of water can help soothe your child’s anxiety. For many parents, this simple trick might be hard to believe but according to health experts, water plays an important role in our body functions.

In fact, health experts agree that if we are dehydrated, our body becomes strained and as a result, we become anxious and stressed. Children, of course, are no different.

In fact, Barry Joe McDonagh, the creator behind the anxiety treatment program, Panic Away, says that dehydration can contribute to nervousness. And with the summer months and heat among us, many parents don’t realize just how dehydrated children can become even after one short hour in the sun. He notes that dehydration has also been linked to a rise in cortisol levels, which is the hormone that increases stress.

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According to Very Well Family, Barry puts it this way, “Nearly every function of the body is monitored and pegged to the efficient flow of water through our system. Water transports hormones, chemical messengers, and nutrients to vital organs of the body. When we don’t keep our bodies well hydrated, they may react with a variety of signals… some of which are symptoms, of anxiety.”

Barry also says that drinking water can be soothing. A study from the Tufts University in 2009 proved that there was a clear link between hydration and mood. Students who were mildly dehydrated reported feeling angry, confused, tense and fatigued.

child drinking water
Credit: iStock / eugenesergeev

Some of the signs of dehydration in kids include dry, cracked lips and a dry mouth, a decrease in urine output, no urine for eight to 12 hours, or dark-colored urine, drowsiness or irritability, or cold and dry skin. In addition, your child might also show low energy levels or seem very weak or limp. Another cause for concern is when there are no tears while they are crying.

In order to prevent dehydration, make sure that your child is drinking enough water throughout the day. Doctors suggest that both adults and children should drink at least six to eight cups of water each day. Give extra fluids in frequent, small sips, especially if your child looks or feels week. You can also give fruits, vegetables, popsicles, ice chips, and cereal mixed with milk for added water or fluid along with their regular diet. It takes approximately 30 to 60 minutes for a child’s body to rehydrate.

If you feel as though your child is still not hydrated, seek medical attention immediately.

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