Why is it Safe to Give Distilled Water for Babies?

When it comes to your baby’s health, there is simply no compromise. Whether you’re new parents or parents-to-be, we understand your concern. The hyper-awareness of all the potential dangers and hazards out there that could negatively impact your child even by the smallest factor is totally normal. So, embrace it. When it comes to giving water to your baby, a million questions will pop into your head- first off, if it’s even safe for them to consume water as is (and not with formula) and whether they should be drinking pure, distilled, mineral or tap water. With so many options, choosing the right one becomes a complicated task. But lucky for you, we’ve done all the research and are presenting facts as is in the next section.

Distilled Water for Babies: Safe or Not?

Let us ease your mind: distilled water is the safest form of water to consume for human beings. It has undergone several processes of purification, vaporized and then condensed back to its original liquid state. In this process of distillation, essentially, all the impurities have been taken out. While it has no taste and contains no impurities, it also contains no minerals.

Can I Give My Baby Distilled Water?

Yes, you can. But it is only advised to let your baby consume water as is after six months of age. You can get distilled water at all stores in gallon-sized jugs designed specifically for babies. Look in the baby aisles of big-box & grocery stores, and even some pharmacies. It is not necessary to buy baby-friendly brands when it comes to distilled water, as they are exactly the same for babies and adults. This will help you save some money, but ultimately, the decision is yours.

Distilled Water in Baby Formula

The ADA recommends that you use fluoride-free water to mix with your concentrated formulas for your babies. This is because fluoride for babies below six months of age puts them at risk for enamel fluorosis, a condition that forms right around the time babies’ teeth develop. Even though this is not a major disease, this can cause slight discoloration, faint white lines and even spots develop around their permanent teeth. For this not to happen, it is recommended that you mix baby formula with distilled water that does not contain any minerals (and therefore, no fluoride). This is one of the main reasons why distilled water is most recommended for infants aged below six months.

When Can I Give My Baby Distilled Water?

The truth is that water, in any form, must not be given to babies under six months of age. Keep in mind that a baby’s stomach is very small and even a little extra water can fill them up more than they need to. What results is a baby that doesn’t want to eat formula or consume breast milk, the only actual sources of nutrients for the baby? Therefore, before the baby can actually consume solid foods, it is recommended that the amount of water present in breast milk and formula is just about right for the baby and provides just as much hydration as a baby that old requires.

Aside from distilled water mixed with baby formula, keep in mind that babies do not need to consume water, per se. Water supplementation for babies that are breast-fed is not required at all. If you are worried about your baby being dehydrated on a hot, sunny day outside, you could increase their water intake, but ensure it does not spill over 2-3 ounces.

Don’t Play God

Too much water for an infant leads to water intoxication, which is also referred to as hyper-hydration or even water poisoning. This can go on further to result in fatal disturbances in the overall functioning of their brains, so do not take this lightly. If you feel that your baby is losing too much water, consider a rehydration solution like Pedialyte instead of water itself. Once they are over six months, you can give them distilled water (after they’ve started consuming solid foods). This works as a great beverage, apart from formula and breast milk! If you ever have a question about giving distilled water for babies, feel free to reach out to your pediatrician for further instructions.