Can babies drink water? Infants under 6 months of age are advised not to be given plain water, because it has dangerous side effects. Breast milk or formula milk is actually sufficient to provide the nutritional needs of infants.
Exclusive breastfeeding is important for babies under 6 months of age. This means that babies are only given breast milk to provide adequate nutrition and do not consume other foods or drinks, including water. So, can babies drink water? Here’s more information.
Can Babies Drink Water? Here’s the Explanation
Can babies drink water? To answer this question, know the following risks of drinking water in infants under 6 months of age:
Infants under 6 months are at risk of diarrhea if given plain water. However, if the baby drinks formula milk mixed with water, use really boiled water, then let it cool for a while to give it to the baby. If you are using bottled water, check the label to make sure the sodium level is not above 200 milligrams and the sulfate level is below 250 milligrams.
Babies who drink water can also trigger flatulence. The digestive system and the ability of the baby’s stomach are not optimal in absorbing fluids, so they cannot absorb a lot of fluid intake.
Babies who are given plain water will be full longer, so they are reluctant to drink breast milk or formula milk. As a result, babies do not receive the nutrients they need for their growth and development, so they are at risk of nutritional deficiencies and weight loss.
When is the Right Time for a Baby to Drink Water?
Here are some conditions that allow babies to drink water:
If it is past the age of 6 months, babies can be given water if they feel thirsty. However, give your baby a maximum of half a glass of water per day. In addition, make sure breast milk is the main source of nutrition for babies even if they are over 6 months old.
To treat dehydration due to vomiting, fever or diarrhea, the doctor will recommend special electrolyte drinks for babies. This method aims to replace fluids and electrolytes lost during dehydration.
3. Can already consume MPASI
Babies can also be given plain water if they are 6 months old and can already consume complementary foods for breast milk (MPASI). However, doctors may recommend giving water until the baby is 1 year old.
Those are the risks and rules for giving plain water to babies under 6 months old. Apart from water, avoid giving other drinks to babies, such as soft drinks, juices and tea. Therefore, make sure to give breast milk as the main food for babies under 6 months old.
If you are still unsure about the safety and risks of giving plain water or your baby experiences the symptoms mentioned earlier after drinking water, immediately take your little one to the doctor for a complete and thorough examination and a diagnosis of the cause. That way, your little one will get the right treatment and avoid serious side effects and endanger his life.