Staying Hydrated During Pregnancy
Staying hydrated in Florida’s tropical climate can be hard for all of us, but during pregnancy, it becomes even more difficult—and more important. Right now, your body is busy making amniotic fluid, building new tissue, producing extra blood, carrying nutrients to your baby and flushing out extra waste and toxins—and this means you need even more water than before.
Effects of dehydration
- Dehydrating during pregnancy isn’t good for you or your baby. It can lead to serious complications, such as:
- neural tube defects
- poor milk production
- low amniotic fluid
- pre-term labor and delivery
- poor nutrition for your baby
- birth defects
Signs and symptoms of dehydration
If you don’t have enough water in your system, you’ll be prone to “maternal overheating” because your body can’t regulate its temperature. You may notice symptoms like:
- dry, sticky mouth
- chapped lips
- less urine, which may be dark in color
- not sweating, even when it’s hot
- feeling lightheaded or dizzy
- weakness or fatigue
- very dry skin
- Braxton-Hicks contractions
- racing heart
- If you struggle to drink the recommended 8 to 12 glasses of water each day, try these tips:
- Add fresh or frozen fruit to your water to improve the taste.
- Steer clear of caffeinated and sugary drinks, which can dehydrate you.
- Up your intake of foods with high water content, like fruits, veggies, yogurt and all-fruit popsicles.
- Try to stay out of mid-day heat as much as possible.
- Keep a glass of water with you all the time, and drink before you feel thirsty.
- Remember that all liquids count: juice, tea, soup, milk, sparkling water… whatever you like!
- Use a bottle or cup with measurement lines to keep track of your daily ounces.
For more information, visit BayCare.org/Health-Library/Thirst-and-Dehydration.