Catholic Medical Quarterly Volume 70(2) May 2020
An excellent new resource on Dehydration
It’s great to report a new resource for families who are concerned about the possible dehydration of their loved ones. The site is simple and really good, with sensible simple advice and help and also the offer of support in discussing problems with the hospital providing (or not) care.
Are they dehydrated?
For example, in its section entitled “Are they dehydrated?” you find this advice.
- They may be thirsty and ask for water. They may not be able to reach to drink for themselves even if there is water at the bedside.
- Their mouth, tongue and lips may look dry and crusted and their speech may be soft and poorly pronounced. (Breathing through the mouth can also cause a dry mouth)
- If they have a urine bag, the urine will be dark yellow.
- They may start to get drowsy or confused.
- They may have an intravenous drip but it is running very slowly.
- Blood tests can help confirm dehydration if disputed.
If you suspect dehydration try this test:
Gently lift a fold of skin on the back of the hand: if dehydrated, it will remain elevated.
This is ‘skin ridging’.
It’s a really useful resource and worth a visit.