Hydration Interventions for older people living in residential and nursing care homes: overview of the literature

Glenda Cook, Philip Hodgson, Juliana Thompson, Lesley Bainbridge, Amy Johnson, Paul Storey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
18 Downloads (Pure)


Care home populations experiencing high levels of multi-morbidity and dementia require support from caregivers to meet their hydration requirements. This article provides an overview of literature related to hydration interventions and highlights gaps in knowledge.
Sources of data
This paper draws on UK-focused literature from Applied Social Sciences Index and Abstracts (ASSIA), CINAHL, Medline, Proquest Hospital Premium Collection, Cochrane Library and RCN databases on hydration interventions for older people living with multimorbidity and dementia in care homes.
Areas of agreement
Fluid intake is too low in care home residents, and no single hydration intervention is effective in addressing the complex problems that older residents present.
Areas of controversy
There is a lack of consensus about how much fluid an older person should consume daily for optimum health. There is also lack of agreement about what interventions are effective in supporting individuals with complex physical and cognitive problems to achieve daily fluid intake targets.
Growing points
To improve hydration care for residents, care home teams should be competent in the delivery of hydration care, and work closely with integrated multi-professional healthcare specialists to provide proactive case management.
Areas timely for developing research
There is a need for understanding of what hydration practices and processes are effective for care home residents and including these in multi-component interventions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-79
Number of pages9
JournalBritish Medical Bulletin
Issue number1
Early online date26 Sept 2019
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2019


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