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My toddler doesn't drink enough

(27 Posts)
Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:09:42

My DD (just 3) hardly drinks anything through the day and I'm getting desperate. Left to her own devices she drinks approximately 100ml of water or sugar free squash all day. She has milk on her cereal and access to a drinks bottle of weak squash all day. I resorted to squash in desperation because she used to love it as a treat and would guzzle a whole cup so I thought letting her have it all the time would encourage her to drink more but once the novelty had worn off she went back to her old non-drinking ways. She doesn't really seem to like milk as a drink either hot or cold. She will have a few sips then leave it. I've also tried hot chocolate and undiluted fresh juice as treats to see if this encourages more drinking. No joy. It's very hard work getting her to drink more. She is very strong minded and independent and kicks up a huge fuss if I "force" her to drink more eg by saying she's not allowed to get down from the table until she's finished her drink. Weirdly at her nursery (3 days a week) they report that she drinks reasonably well and will happily drink milk and water there. If left to her own devices she only does 1-2 wees a day - quite big volume but definitely quite dark yellow. She still wears a nappy overnight and it is heavy but not bursting if that makes sense. Any ideas?

JohnLapsleyParlabane Sat 19-Nov-16 18:11:18

Can you give her wet food such as cucumber and watermelon?

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:13:20

I forgot to say she has been constipated since she was weaned and is on movicol for this. I suspect that this is also linked to dehydration as she eats very well (always has) and has her 5 portions of fruit and veg so no dietary reason for constipation. So she isn't really self-regulating her fluid intake. She does need to drink more!

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:13:56

Thanks for replying. I do try to do that as well but I will try and make sure I do that more often.

CurtainsforRonnie Sat 19-Nov-16 18:15:36

Mines just had grapes after dinner, & is now munching on a frozen yoghurt lolly (shop bought)

Would she like things like that?
Cucumber in strips, Apples, Jelly etc might be good.

Whippet75 Sat 19-Nov-16 18:18:15

I can understand your concern but maybe it's a battle of wills, particularly if she drinks ok at nursery. Just take the pressure off and try not to let her know you are anxious about it. Try making some lovely homemade ice lollies with different fluids to try and tempt her, my son couldn't get enough of them over the summer.

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:18:26

She's pretty good with fruit so her dietary fluid intake is probably better than I'm giving her credit for! But could definitely try and make her eat more watery fruit. Jelly and lollies for pudding definitely a good idea. I hadn't thought of that! Thanks!

thethoughtfox Sat 19-Nov-16 18:18:56

Mine is the same and now having all sorts of poo problems.

Cosmicglitterghoul Sat 19-Nov-16 18:20:16

I had this exact problem with DD1, she was terribly constipated and hardly drank any water. These are the things I tried:

A variety of drinking vessels and straws changed regularly.

Milk watered down.

Eating ice chips.

A spot of bribery. Drink this and you can have .....

Playing tea party with mini cups and water.


Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:20:45

Yeah you're probably right about putting pressure on! Her very wise keyworker at nursery also said the same thing. Ice lollies are a great idea. She would love the novelty value of that.

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:21:25

So glad I'm not the only one having this problem. These weird self dehydrating toddlers

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:21:49

Tea party with mini drinks great idea too. Thanks for these

memyselfandaye Sat 19-Nov-16 18:22:01

I was also going to suggest ice lollies.

What about a cup full of crushed ice?

memyselfandaye Sat 19-Nov-16 18:23:32

You could use diffent colourings in the ice, tell her she's eating a rainbow.

Whippet75 Sat 19-Nov-16 18:24:35

Also fruit smoothies my son enjoys being in charge of what goes in and making them, get some cheap cocktail accessories to tart them up a bit. You could add ice or fluids to them.

Shurelyshomemistake Sat 19-Nov-16 18:25:48

I know it's eady to say but they really will drink if thirsty enough. Neither of mine drink much at all (perhaps 1-2 small glasses a day) but they are older, 6 & 8. Dietician we saw for other issues said the 8 glasses a day stuff is a myth perpetuated by bottled water companies. No science. Just drink to thirst.

JohnLapsleyParlabane Sat 19-Nov-16 18:26:26

My mum has just suggested showering her instead of bathing her. Apparently I was a food and drink refuser and when I got cystitis aged 3 that was the most reliable method of getting fluid into me!

Shurelyshomemistake Sat 19-Nov-16 18:26:53

Have you ruled out other causes of constipation BTW? withholding, poor gut motility, cow's milk intolerance etc?

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:27:59

Different colours good idea. Not sure if she'd like crushed ice but worth a try. Forgot to say I occasionally make myself a smoothie for breakfast and have offered her these when I have them but she won't even try them! so annoying as I think she'd love a smoothie. Also she has a special curly straw for drinks to try and encourage some excitement around drinks. Will definitely do the ice lollies though.

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:30:13

Showering her is an interesting idea. She does occasionally start drinking the bath water at bath time hmm so I think she is thirsty then. Like I haven't offered her enough drinks all day

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:33:49

Withholding was definitely an issue during potty training. I upped her dose of movicol and it seemed to fix it and we don't have any problems with that now. She might have poor gut motility - it's never really been investigated properly so might take her back to the GP about that. I don't think she's got CMPI she was mixed fed with BM and formula as a baby and prior to weaning had totally normal (for a baby) bowels. I'm not entirely sure what symptoms of CMPI would be but I never had any major "issues" prior to weaning IYSWIM

Lindorballs Sat 19-Nov-16 18:34:50

Not sure how to tag specific posters but reassuring re dietician saying 8 glasses not necessary. Makes me feel a bit better

LestatVonGaribaldi Sat 19-Nov-16 20:19:16

My dd is very constipated. She goes every day but very hard faeces and a lot of straining. It's quite frustrating being told by the gp that I need to get her to drink more water, she's 16 months so there's only so much I can do.

It's been a bit better recently. I've discovered she likes pineapple and orange juice but it needs to be diluted around 50/50 so she has a large beaker of this at lunch which she'll drain.

She likes drinking water out of a pint glass with a straw. It has to be glass though. Before she goes to bed we sit on the sofa watching TV and I pretend to drink from the straw. She likes sharing it with me and tends to take sips.

I make her wet dinners a few times a week (soup/spag bol/stew)

tinymeteor Sat 19-Nov-16 20:26:15

Does she have a favourite tv show or movie so you could buy a cup with the characters on? Letting her "choose a cup" knowing full well she has a runaway favourite might encourage her to drink. Sometimes merchandised tat can be your friend.

SunnySideDownUp Sat 19-Nov-16 20:32:06

Things that have helped us are:

Fizzy water
Different cups/beakers. Dd prefers adult ones with big holes rather than sippy cups
Ice lollies that are 50:50 fruit juice:water
Ice water
Tea (mint/decaff)
Milk with breakfast and in evening
Cucumber, apples, tomatoes etc

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