Not Drinking Any water/Juice

Updated on April 01, 2010
L.L. asks from Newport Beach, CA
15 answers

My 18 months old son has viral gastroenteritis. It started 4 days ago. He stopped vomiting but sill have diaria 2 or 3 times a day. I know I have to give him lots of fluid. He was drinking Pedialytes for a day but now he is refusing to drink anything. I tried regular water, Juice, Pedialyt Ice Pops, gatorades, any thing you name it but he won't open his mouth to drink. I have to prevent him form dehydration. Any suggestions????

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answers from Miami on

We use to give my daughter a bit of shredded/shaved ice. Almost like the shaved ice you get in snow cones. Very very small and thin. Nothing that will scratch the throat or could be stuck.. No cubes. one little piece at a time. Then switched her the baby drinks. Probably getting a sore throut. If you doesnt start drinking take him to the doctor pretty quick because they can get dehydrated pretty fast.

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answers from New York on

My son was dehydrated when he was a year old the pedi had me give him a teaspoon of the juice from canned fruit every 10 minutes. My son, like yours, would not take any other fluids and he was like a rag doll from dehydration. The small amts were easy for him to tolerate. Good Luck.

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answers from Boise on

Can you not do milk? That is my son's comfort drink and when we tried to prevent dehydration, he didn't do much pedialyte - that stuff is nasty sweet! He just wanted milk. Even though the doctor didn't recommend it, I gave it to him. He might throw up a bit, but at least I was getting liquid into him. Just think if you are nauseous, do you want sweet drinks? You could also try cutting some juice with water.



answers from Honolulu on

I know this might sound odd, but I've read that you can give him fluids rectally. A mixture of half water and have juice if he can't or refuses to take fluids orally. I would first consult your pediatrician and if it's ok'd by them, then go to your pharmacy and purchase an enima syringe.
Gatorade by the way has tons of refined sugar and is very bad to give your baby.



answers from Honolulu on

Make extra sure... he does not get dehydrated... if he does, you need to take him to the ER, pronto.
Dehydration can be life threatening.

You can keep trying to get him to drink... but if he does not, and he has not been already... then you need to be proactive.. and check him. Once they show symptoms of dehydration, they are already.
In dehydration, they lose salts/electrolytes etc.

How about try to give him some soup, just the broth?

Here is a link for dehydration symptoms:

take care,



answers from Reno on

Try anything with a high liquid content, like popsicles, applesauce, slushies. And hang in there - this won't last forever!



answers from San Diego on

Will he eat soft foods? Try grapes, watermelon...anything that has some juice in it.
Depending on how long this is happening...maybe another 24 hrs, I would take him back to the peds. If this virus is getting worse, it could be painful or bothering him so much that having anything going through his digestive tract is painful making him not want to eat/drink. Do they have him on any antibiotics? The antibiotics could be making him nauseated...again causing him not to eat/drink. If that's the case, check with his ped and see if there is something else that they can give him.

Poor punkin and Mama. Hope he feels better soon!


answers from Jacksonville on

What about regular popsicles? My doc suggested them for ME when I was pregnant with a bout of gastroenteritis... and he didn't want to hospitalize me for dehydration. Get the plain old orange, cherry or grape ones that are singles. They taste better than those nasty pedialyte ones.

And you can make it into a game/treat. "Look! Mommy got us some popsicles! I'm having __, what flavor do you want?"

If he likes bananas... there ARE some banana flavored ones out there (and they are pretty good).. but you will have to look for them.. they are off brand.. not Popsicle brand.
Oh... and gingerale~
That was always what my mom gave us when we were sick. The ginger helps settle the stomach too... maybe the "fizz" will get him to want to try it. Just tiny sips though. At this point... don't worry about the "electrolyte" content.. just get fluid in him! Smartwater and Vitamin water have electrolytes (and B vitamins in the vitamin water) if you want to try one of those. They have NO artificial sweeteners nor high fructose corn syrup and are less syrupy sweet than most gatorade or powerade drinks too. Lots of flavors to try...



answers from Los Angeles on

When my kids have had issues like this (including myself) I have not wanted to drink and neither have they. One time, when my 1st son was about 1 year old, he got sick and refused anything, so I just let him listen to his body. He went about 20 hours without fluids and then asked for water....and drank 2 bottles of it.

We also use Hyland's Bioplasma to restore elctrolytes without all the junk that Pedialyte has in it.



answers from Los Angeles on

Give hom something salty/spicy to eat. See if he doesn't ask for liquid. If necessary, rub a tiny quantity of spice on his tongue and keep some liquid in his sippy cup around. He will surely take it. He may like milk too.



answers from Los Angeles on

Try giving really juicy high water content fresh fruit like watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, plump grapes, oranges, peaches, etc. Also try to make your own jello wigglers.

Hope your baby gets well soon!



answers from Florence on

My daughter went through a little thing where she wouldn't drink anything and my pediatrician said even if you have to give it to her through a medicine dropper a little bit at a time then do it. Thankfully it didn't come to that but it is a possibility. Also be sure he is having wet diapers and that the inside of his mouth is not dry. I can't remember if you can still see the soft spot at this age or what. But if it is sunken in any that could be another sign of dehydration. Also notice the color of his eyes. I think if they are real red and bloodshot that is another sign. Just be careful and don't wait too late. Good luck and I hope he feels better.



answers from San Diego on

Good Ole Welches Grape Popsicles or let him pick out something fun and colorful from the freezer section! I found that when my child would not drink or eat, she had something going on in her throat. Could his throat be sore from vomiting? Stomach acid can burn in the esophagus and the throat.



answers from Los Angeles on

Perhaps you could try to make drinking liquids fun--how about filling a new spray bottle and allowing him to spray it into his own mouth? Same for a medicine dropper or big straw.



answers from San Diego on

I think for an 18 month old, you may have to play games or thricks. unless you are willing to get firm with your child. dehydration is very serious in small children, you can't let him be in control. I would try the snow cone ice, canned fruits are high in sugar and fruitose, which can make dehydration worse, His throat may be sore from vomiting, so swallowing may be hard right now, so i agree try the shaved ice. J. L.

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