Have You Been Drinking Enough? 10 Tell-tale Signs of Dehydration
We can’t live without water. In fact, if we are deprived of water for only 3 days, we would perish. Our body lives with water and is made of lots of water, typically that's 60% for men and 55% women.
If our body loses more than 10% of its water, it can become a medical emergency. And with all that, many of us don’t know how important water it is for us and how important it is to drink a minimum amount of water daily. It’s not a mere trifle, it’s a life necessity.
If you don't replenish our personal water supply we soon start to feel tired, depressed, and unhealthy.
How Do We Become Dehydrated?
Our body takes water from what we ingest (food and drinks) and from breathing. And it eliminates it through perspiration, urine, and stools.
When we eliminate more water than we take in, dehydration occurs. Our system eliminates more water during intense training or exercising, summer heat, health conditions like diabetes, vomiting or diarrhea, nausea, fever, severe infections, and burns.
To keep the proper balance of water in our body, we need to be aware of the signals we get from our bodies that it needs water before it gets worse.
10 Warning Signs of Dehydration
1). Thirst – Your Best Friend for Health
Thirst is the first and most important signal that your body sends you that it needs water. It’s like crying “water, give me water, I am thirsty!” Our body has an intelligent system that helps it get water whenever it needs it, without us being aware of it. Reaching to a glass of water is an automatic reaction of your body to replenish the bodily stock of water before any significant loss happens. Pretty clever, our nature.
With age, this signaling system declines, so we need to be more conscious about drinking water regularly.
2). Urine Changes
Well, if you knew how to guess in coffee, now you learn to guess in your… urine. This body waste can give you clues about your water level. Funny and weird, but true.
Become a clever urine detective, and check if there is a change in color, concentration, and amount of this bodily fluid.
When you are well hydrated, your urine is colorless or pale yellow, clear, and odorless, and when you’re dehydrated, the urine has a dark yellow color, is unclear, heavy, and smelly.
When your body lack water, your kidneys retain water to save it, so your urine levels drop.
3). Fatigue, Tiredness, Sleepiness
Especially if you’re exercising a lot almost every day and you have a stressing or physically demanding job, you can get easily dehydrated. Signs? You have no energy, you feel tired and sleepy, even if you’ve slept 8 hours.
4). Headaches and Cognitive Impairment
Even mild dehydration can cause headaches, migraines, difficulty concentrating, poor performance at work. If you drink water and it slowly goes away, you know that this was the cause. If not, check the doctor, as it’s a different health problem.
5). Skin Changes
Your skin contains a lot of water, so when you’re not replenishing the moisture in your skin, it starts to look dull and loses elasticity.
If your skin starts to look dry, dull, saggy, you know it’s past the time when you had to drink water and you need to grab at least one glass of water right NOW.
6). Muscle Cramps
When you lose water through sweating, you also lose important electrolytes like sodium, which take care of your muscles. Lose them and you will immediately feel it in your body: muscle contractions or cramps. Ring, ring! Holy Cramp, it’s time to drink water!
7). Low blood pressure
You feel dizzy when you stand up from a chair or from bed? You feel weak? This could be a sign to drink more water, as you have low blood pressure. Dehydration decreases the amount of blood in your body and your heart has to pump faster and harder to transport blood to the brain.
Just drink water and the blood pressure will come to normal.
8). Heart Palpitation
You feel your heart jumping up, racing and pounding and it’s not of happiness? You’ve got heart palpitations. They can be caused by dehydration, as your heart tries hard to compensate the loss of water in the body.
Supposing it’s not a cardiovascular disease, just drink water and your heart will thank you.
9). Cranky and Confused
Nope, that’s not the name of a new movie (although it could be, right?), it’s how you feel if you don’t drink enough water. Dehydration affects your brain, too. Irritability, moodiness, impaired brain function, anxiety, loss of memory, are signals that your water level has dropped in your body and you didn’t take care to replenish it.
Drinking water brings clarity and concentration power to your brain. Pretty powerful this water, if you come to think about it, right?
10). Organ Failure
If you’ve come that far, it’s worse. Severe dehydration can and will severely impair your health if you don’t drink water soon enough.
Every cell in your body, every tissue, every organ, even your hair, nails, and eyelashes need water. If you don’t replenish the water loss in your body for a long period of time, you can get to organ failure. Which is bad. Really bad. Brain damage, kidney failure, heart attack, shock – they can happen. Don’t even get there!
The conclusion is simple: you want to stay alive, healthy, happy? Stop! Drink water every day, including fruits, salads, teas, soups, etc.