How to Encourage Your Child to Drink More Water

Has your doctor informed you that your child needs to drink more water? Perhaps you're concerned that your child is drinking too many sugary fluids and you'd like them to focus on water instead. Encouraging a child to drink more water can be difficult, but there are a few tips that can help.

Purchase some drink flavorings.

Especially if your child is used to drinking sugary beverages and juice, he or she may simply find water boring. To amend this issue, consider purchasing some sugar-free water flavorings. These often come in drop form. You squeeze the bottle to add a drop or a few drops to a glass or a bottle of water. 

Look for drink flavorings that are made with natural ingredients, and purchase a couple of different flavors so your child does not get bored too quickly. If your child is young, make sure you supervise their use of the drink flavorings so they don't use too much.

Keep chilled water available at all times.

Many people prefer water when it is ice-cold. Your child likely agrees. While you may be able to encourage yourself to drink cool tap water when you know you need to drink more, your child may not be so willing. Keeping a pitcher of cold water in the fridge at all times will make it easier to encourage them to drink. Plus, you won't have to deal with the mess and hassle of ice cubes. 

Send them off with a water bottle.

Part of the problem may be that you're expecting your child to drink too much water at one time. Children's stomachs are smaller than adult stomachs, so especially if you're focusing on water intake during meals, they just might not have room for extra water with their food. Sending a water bottle with them when they go off to school or a friend's house will allow them to drink slowly throughout the day. Encourage them to try to finish the entire water bottle by the time they come home. You can make this a challenge and reward them with a small prize every time they succeed.

Encouraging your child to drink more water rather than soda and sugary drinks can take some time. But before long, their taste buds will adapt and they'll start to find water -- especially with the flavor drops -- more appealing. Drinking it will start to become a habit, and you'll be sure your child stays hydrated.