Is your child dehydrated? Check this ’50 shades of wee’ urine chart

Your child's wee is a good indication as to whether or not they're getting enough to drink. And this handy infographic could be really useful to what colour wee to be wary of – particularly when you're out in the sun...

boy holding a bottle of water

As the year heats up, making sure we – and of course, our kids – get enough water to drink is very important.


Dehydration can lead to all sort of issues, especially in little ones, so it’s really key that you keep an eye on what they’re drinking in the day if you can – and checking their urine can be a really good way to do that.

As a general rule, the darker your child’s wee is, the more dehydrated they are.

And if, alongside the dark wee, your child had signs of limpness, drowsiness or irritability – or there are no tears when they cry – it’s worth getting them to a doctor.

But all the better if you can avoid the dehydration in the first place. That’s why we love this simple-to-read chart: it shows 50 shades of yellow your child’s urine can appear – from a pale yellow, meaning they’re perfectly hydrated, to a dark brown, meaning they’re severely dyhydrated, and the stages in between that could be a 1st waning that they’re on the way to dehydration….

child dehydration: shades of urine chart

You could even print this chart out and pin it up in your loo – for quick colour-matching when anyone in the family has a wee!

Now, here at MFM HQ, one of our team says her daughter’s school is already doing a pretty good job at teaching the children there to check their wee. Maybe it ‘s same at your child’s school?

“Pretty much every time my 5-year-old daughter goes to the toilet,” says our team-member, “she looks into the loo bowl and checks the colour of her urine. She’s happy if it’s pale but, this morning, it was dark yellow and she commented on how she’d need to have a glass of water.

“I’ve not told her about doing this, so she must have got it from school. I’m going to give he this chart now, as it will make the process loads more fun – she’ll want to match the colours exactly!”

Pic: Getty. Illustration: Emma Williamson h/t SodaStream


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