We’ve all been told the importance of drinking at least eight glasses of water a day to an extent where we’re fed up of it. However, did you know that dehydration can severely affect your health and general well-being in more than one way. After all, the human body consists of 60% water. These are the 8 ways you’re jeopardizing your health if you don’t drink adequate water on a daily basis.
Disruptions in mood and cognitive functioning: Even mild levels of dehydration can make you feel cranky and also affect important aspects of your cognitive functioning such as concentration, short-term memory and alertness levels. Other than this, dehydration can also cause anger, confusion and fatigue .
Difficulty in regulating body temperature: Being hydrated is critical for your body’s process of temperature control as sweating is an important cooling mechanism during physical activity and hot climate. When your sweat loss is not compensated with fluids intake, your body won’t have enough water to produce sweat and continue with the cooling mechanism . This is why many people suffer from heat strokes during summer because the heat gets trapped in the body. In some cases, a heat stroke can prove to be fatal.
It could affect your kidneys’ functioning: Your kidneys play a vital role in regulating water balance and blood pressure whilst removing wastes from the body. Severe dehydration can put severe strain on your kidneys and affect their functioning. In some cases, it could also cause kidney stones .
Headaches: One of the most common symptoms of dehydration is persistent headaches. Researchers have found that the headaches subside within three hours if the individual replenishes their body with adequate water intake .
Your heart can get strained: Your blood pressure, volume and heart rate are closely linked to each other. Your body’s blood volume is regulated normally based on your water intake and water output. This means a decrease in blood volume could occur through sweating and if you’re dehydrated, your heart has to work harder to pump blood through your body to regulate its temperature . This puts you at a risk of physical exhaustion especially during summers.
Dry skin: It’s true. Your skin’s health does depend on the amount of water you drink. This is because your skin contains around 30% of water which contributes to its elasticity, softness and resilience against environmental factors. Dehydration can cause dry skin and also reduce your skin’s elasticity . While drinking adequate water can’t prevent wrinkles and other signs of skin ageing, it can help in keeping your skin healthy to an extent.
Severe abdominal pain: Pakistani doctors found that most of their patients (68 males) who complained of severe stomach aches along with other symptoms like vomiting, back aches and pain in the lower limb were actually severely dehydrated and the symptoms subsided once they were given rehydration therapy . If you’re stepping outdoors, remember to always carry a bottle of water to keep dehydration at bay.