Friday, April 30, 2010

Staying Hydrated

Yesterday my students and I were waiting for the art teacher, so I decided to seize the opportunity to have a discussion about the importance of staying hydrated. At the beginning of every year, I ask families to send water bottles with their children every day. We also have a water filter in our classroom, so they can fill up their bottles when they run out.

Inevitably, the bottles start leaking or they get lost, and pretty soon children are asking to go to the water fountains because they are thirsty. In our discussion yesterday, I tried to reiterate the idea that if you only drink when you are thirsty, your body is already dehydrated. And drinking a few sips from the water fountain a couple times a day is, unfortunately, not sufficient.

Honestly, I battle with drinking enough water every day, too. I try to remember to carry around a 40-ounce water bottle everywhere I go. Before I leave the house, I stand at the door and say, "Wallet, keys, cell phone, water bottle, CHECK!"

Even when I have my bottle with me, it can be hard to force myself to drink it enough. The more I drink, the more I have to go to the restroom (which is no easy feat when you are a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade teacher!).

I've started trying to drink one entire bottle in the 2 hours I'm at home before leaving for work. Then I try to drink one more throughout the day and some more when I'm home at night. Sometimes I come home with my bottle nearly half full. When that happens, I can literally feel the effect on my body.

It's definitely a work in progress!

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Karuna said...

It is so true! When I was an Outward Bound Instructor I had students with headaches and the first thing I would have them do was get out their waterbottle and drink a full 500cc. If that didn't work I would have them chug the rest while they found their hat and I found them a snack. If that STILL didn't work I would cave a conceed the motrin.

Now, I find that my school schedule is so hectic that some days I have had 2 cups of coffee and the little glass of OJ I use to take my vitamins in the "morning" (whatever time of day that may be...I work nights and go to school days). When I am running around seeing patients I forget or postpone the water to avoid having to spend the whole day asking where the bathroom is. The problem is when I have these days I suffer! Headache, fatigue, cranky attitude...It is ALWAYS amaizing to me when I finally catch up and start feeling better that it was as simple as water.

I am headed off to work now. Keys, lunch bag, cell phone, water bottle!

Sara E. Cotner said...

@ Karuna: I completely agree. I can get dehydration headaches so quickly. Aack!

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