The water balance of the body is important through one's lifecycle, but that much more during pregnancy as the placenta and amniotic fluid depends on it. The total blood volume goes up and both thirst and urine secretion gets more frequent.
Drinking water dilutes your urine which reduces your risk of infection. It is especially important to stay hydrated in the last trimester, when dehydration can cause contraction that can trigger preterm labor.
You need an additional 750 to 1000 ml of water daily (normal requirement equals 2 liters) during pregnancy. Feeling thirsty, dizzy, or tired, getting headaches, having dry lips, mouth, or eye, dark colored urine, infrequent urination, and maternal overheating (Water helps to regulate the temperature of your body and not getting enough can lead to overheating, an indication of dehydration during pregnancy)
1) Excessive sweating due to hot weather or exercise, not taking in enough water, excessive urination due to conditions like diabetes or kidney disease etc. – can cause dehydration during pregnancy.
2) Extreme morning sickness. It’s normal for women to experience nausea and vomiting during the first trimester. However, some women experience a severe version of this which puts them at risk for dehydration. Morning sickness may start earlier (between the fourth and fifth week) in women with this condition.
3) Excessive sugar intake: Avoid taking sugar from biscuits, cakes, pastries, readymade juices, ice cream, readymade cereal, protein biscuit etc. Instead have sugar from sugarcane, seasonal fruits, coconut water, homemade laddoo etc.
4) Excessive salt: Avoid salt from packaged and processed food products (biscuit, chips, samosa, pizza etc), instead add salt to lemonade to keep you hydrated.
5) Caffeine: More than two cup of tea or coffee is not advisable. Don’t consume tea/ coffee first thing in the morning or at bedtime.
To Avoid Dehydration:
- Get Fluids In Different Forms!
Making sure that you get enough fluids is critical to prevent dehydration while you’re pregnant. But you don’t restrict yourself to just drinking water. In fact, Ayurveda recommends that you consume nourishing foods like watery porridges of rice and pulses or drink milk to increase your fluid intake during the first trimester and to avoid dehydration due to morning sickness. You could also sip other nutrient-rich fluids like tender coconut water to keep yourself hydrated.
Another remedy involves mixing the juice of a half a lemon with 2 teaspoons of sugar and a pinch of salt and adding it to half a liter of water. Drinking a cup every 2–3 hours can help avoid dehydration and also quell nausea.
- Use Oral Rehydration Solution
If you do experience symptoms of dehydration you need to take steps to replace lost fluids as well as minerals. You can make an oral rehydration solution (ORS) at home by mixing in 6 level teaspoons of sugar and half a level teaspoon of salt in 1 liter of clean drinking water and keep sipping it.
- Cut Down Caffeine
Avoid consuming excess caffeine as it is a diuretic and can increase the amount of urine you pass. In fact, it’s recommended that you limit your caffeine intake to 200mL a day while you’re pregnant, which generally translates to one cup of coffee.
- Avoid Heat Exposure And Strenuous Exercise
It may also be a good idea to avoid spending time in the heat or activities like strenuous exercise which can lead to overheating and dehydration. Although some amount of exercise is healthy when you’re pregnant, don’t overdo it.