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How Much Water Should My Child Drink

Water is one of the most important parts of any diet. Our bodies need water for basic chemical reactions to take place. When we don’t drink enough water, our bodies can’t function at their best. As dehydration sets in, so do the feelings of being tired and the ability to think clearly.

In the hot summer months, water is important to the body’s cooling system. When our bodies heat up—because of a hot day or because of physical activity, for instance—the brain lets the sweat glands know to produce sweat. The body cools itself by the evaporation of sweat from the skin. If dehydrated, the body can’t sweat enough to stay cool. Water is also essential in helping to prevent urinary tract infections and keeping bowel movements regular.

At CHOC Children’s, we recommend that children drink the amounts of water below according to their age. It is important to note that children should drink the number of 8 ounce cups of water equal to their age, with a maximum of 64 ounces of water for children over the age of 8. These amounts do not include other beverages they may consume in a day, including milk, juice or other beverage.

Age in years
Number of 8 oz cups
1
1
2
2
3
3
4
4
5
5
6
6
7
7
8
8
9 and older
8
Eight 8 oz cups = 2 Liters

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UC Irvine

CHOC Children's is affiliated with the UC Irvine School of Medicine