Dry January? Not for ADHD

by | Jan 18, 2024 | ADHD Symptom Control | 0 comments

You’ve probably heard of Dry January…when people give up alcohol for the first 31 days of the year. I want to offer a new challenge for the next 31 days where you actually drink more…WATER. When you have ADHD, lots of water is essential for proper brain functioning.

That’s right, dehydration makes ADHD worse – it makes your brain work harder and negatively affects your mood, attention, focus, and memory. 

I don’t know about you, but my brain can’t afford to lose any cells or exhaust itself! We have to keep our ADHD brains hydrated! But that’s easier said than done!

Your ADHD Brain Needs a Water Reminder

Thinking we’ll remember to drink water doesn’t work. Just like we often don’t notice when we’re hungry, we don’t notice when we’re thirsty. The ADHD brain needs reminders.

One way is to set up an alert on your phone. Though I often recommend reminder systems, having a message pop up to drink some water every 20-30mins will become annoying and before long, you’ll delete the thing entirely.

In my experience, I’ve found ADHD adults find it easier to remember certain tasks if they think in terms of hooks, instead of reminders.

By hooks, I mean attaching – hooking – the behavior or habit you want to another action. A hook is essentially a mini-routine that leads you from one activity to another.

Easy Tips for Drinking More Water

A hook for drinking water looks like this:

  • Refill your coffee cup – pour a cup of coffee, drink a glass of water
  • Get up in the morning – drink a glass of water
  • Go to the bathroom – drink a glass of water
  • Eat a snack – drink a glass of water
  • Eat a meal – drink a glass of water
  • Walk by a drinking fountain – drink some water
  • See a light switch on the wall – drink some water 😉

See the pattern?

Of course, you need to have a glass near a sink or a water bottle on hand. (No need for it to be a Stanley. Here’s a fun one that keeps track of time and motivates you). Remember, it has to be easy, or you won’t do it if you have ADHD.

You’ll have more success if you keep it simple.

ADHD adults can remember to drink water by hooking it to some other activity you are sure to do throughout the day. 

Bottom line? Give your brain all the help you can.  Eat a healthy diet full of foods that help your ADHD brain. Drink more water and stay hydrated so you don’t increase your ADHD symptoms.

Let’s keep learning with these resources:

Disclosure: There are some affiliate links above and I may receive commission for purchases made through these links, but these are all products that I highly recommend and have used personally or received word from clients on their benefits for ADHD.


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