How To Tell If Your Child May Be Dehydrated

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Have you often wondered how to tell if your child may be dehydrated? Please remember, I’m not a doctor, nurse or anyone in the medical field. I’m a mom and a grandma and sometimes call myself Dr. Linda for the advice I give my loved ones, but I am not a doctor. A couple of days ago I saw on Facebook that one of my very special friends had a sick child. I immediately sent him a text. They have no insurance because, as we all know, many people can’t afford insurance. Often you are better off paying cash when you go to the doctor because the doctors will charge you less because they don’t have to wait months to be reimbursed. Plus, some prescriptions cost less than your co-pay if you pay cash. As young parents, or grandparents, we worry when a young toddler gets sick because they can’t always tell us what hurts or how they are feeling.

I waited a day before I sent another text to see how the little princess was doing. She was better, but after three or four days of vomiting and diarrhea, she was getting more lethargic. My concern was that she may have the Rotovirus or some symptoms of being dehydrated. This is a perfect example of what may happen if we have a disaster in our area and there are no doctors around. We have to educate ourselves now so we can do whatever is possible if we are unable to go to a doctor or the emergency room.

Please note, do not mess around with a child who is dehydrated, or an adult for that matter. Mark has been sick three times in our married life and all three times he has ended up in the hospital because he was too stubborn to go to the doctor. The last time I said we are going to Instacare and we are getting you hooked up to an IV with fluids. We went to the local Instacare facility and I said he needs an IV now, we are our own advocates. I sometimes call myself Bossy Boots, but I know when someone needs an IV and is dehydrated. Yes, indeed, he was severely dehydrated. Older adults sometimes don’t even realize they are thirsty and they may become severely dehydrated.

I had a close friend who had a young son die from the Rotavirus, it’s nothing to mess around with.

Dehydrated Symptoms



Sunken eyes and cheeks

No tears when the child cries

Brown urine

No pee for three hours

Dry diapers (not the norm, they usually have several wet diapers in a day)

Won’t eat, sometimes they are too weak to eat or have no appetite

Lethargic and very fatigued, sleepier than usual

Dry mouth and tongue

Glossy red or cracked lips



Excessive sweating

Listlessness and irritable

Rapid heartbeat

Rapid breathing

Very dry skin


One of the great drinks that can help is Gatorade (it has some Electrolytes), Pedialyte, popsicles, or whatever your family member will drink. Please remember this diet if you have someone in your home who is vomiting or has excessive diarrhea. I call it the BRAT diet. I don’t know where I heard about it but it works. Please don’t second-guess your gut telling you your child is sick and may be dehydrated.

The B.R.A.T. Diet:




Toast (plain)

Please take your child to the doctor, ER or another emergency facility if your gut tells you something is not right. It’s flu and cold season right now and so many viruses are going around. Please stock up on some Gatorade or make your own healthy drink. I like to deliver emergency dehydrated stuff to cute families I love, so I buy the little bottles of Gatorade for them. When in doubt go to the ER if possible. Listen to your head, heart, and gut. Thanks again for being prepared for the unexpected. I highly recommend this Medical Handbook for emergencies.

Tips For Staying Healthy:

Wash your hands.

Keep your bathrooms as clean as possible.

Build up your immune system by eating fruits and vegetables.

Keep your kitchen as clean as possible.

Clean doorknobs, remotes to TV’s,  and light switches with Clorox wipes carefully (they’re pretty dry wipes).

Don’t shake hands, yep, you heard me right, do fist bumps if you feel the need to greet someone with a friendly gesture.

Wash your hands after you fill your gas tank.

Wash your hands after you use a keypad at any store.

Use hand sanitizer after you put your money in one of those tubes at the bank.

I know what you’re thinking, Linda must be a germaphobic. Is that a word? Yes, it is. I own it. May God bless your family to stay healthy this fall and winter.

Help ward off the flu by Linda

Clorox wipes

N-95 Masks

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