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We All Need Water

Dehydration is a common problem amongst nursing home residents.  Dehydration occurs when you do not drink adequate fluids or you lose fluids due to: sweating, vomiting or diarrhea.  If an elderly person becomes dehydrated they are susceptible to cramps, organ malfunction, pressure sores and even death.

Older people are particularly susceptible to dehydration because many elderly have the following conditions:

  • Decreased thirst iStock_000005961615XSmall
  • Kidneys that do not work well
  • Choose to avoid liquids because of incontinence
  • Have difficulty holding a glass
  • Pain urinating
  • Take medications decreasing urine output
  • Inability to regulate body temperature
  • Diabetes
  • Inability to communicate

Signs of dehydration include:

  • Dark yellow urine
  • Sunken eyes
  • Ashen skin
  • Dry skin
  • Bleeding gums
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Weight loss

It is the nursing home’s responsibility to properly hydrate all residents.  Nursing home staff should monitor the amount of fluids consumed by each resident on a daily basis.  If a nursing home allows a resident to become dehydrated they are guilty of nursing home neglect.





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