You wake up in the morning and the first thing you do is a jog. After 30 minutes, you find yourself back home taking breakfast with coffee and little water. Then, you head to your morning meeting and spend three full hours chatting over coffee. Your afternoon meeting involves drinking tea. In the evening, you go out for a bottle of beer or a glass of scotch. That is how easily dehydration can be overlooked and surprisingly there isn’t much awareness about the impacts of lack of hydration, particularly while thinking about its consequences for our body.
Lifestyle patterns are certainly a problem. Many of us do not drink the adequate eight glasses of water on daily basis to replace lost fluids. Drinking beverages and indulging energy in cooled or warmed condition+s worsen the issue.
The Drought Inside
Dehydration practically refers to the insufficient volume of water circulating around your body. Water helps your body perform multiple functions, including blinking your eyes.
An estimated two-thirds of our body is made up of water. Can you then imagine the ill effects of being unable to replace the amount of water that you lose? The effects of dehydration can range from a number of symptoms that you can take for granted like cold sores, and those that can cost you your life.
If It Kills
Can dehydration kill you? Most definitely yes!
Listed below are just possible effects of dehydration that range from slight to extreme, life-threatening impacts:
- Headache, Dizziness and Severe Migraine. Dehydration can cause your brain to contract, even shrink temporarily due to a significant loss of body fluids. Your brain is made up of approximately 73 percent of water. In which case, dehydration can impact your brain’s biochemical makeup relatively quickly, giving you a throbbing headache that, in turn, compromises other vital and mundane functions on the rest of your body.
- Cold Sores.This one is rather tricky. The appearance of cold sores can both be triggered by dehydration and, cold sores can lead to dehydration at the same time. However, getting cold sores when your body is dehydrated requires one very important prerequisite that merits mention, that is, you should have already contracted the herpes simplex 1 or 2 virus which will have been lying dormant inside your body. Close contact with an infected person is the most common way that this virus is transmitted from person-to-person.
Once you get a cold sore, the risk for dehydration becomes even greater. Since the condition can last for up to 10 days, with difficulty in swallowing due to swollen mouth, throat and glands, your body becomes at higher risk of experiencing more severe forms of dehydration.
- Fatigue and Sleepiness. When you are dehydrated, your body conserves energy. Exerting more effort performing various bodily functions, including even the more mundane ones like urinating, requires more fluids. By conserving energy, therefore your body also attempts to conserve more water.
In more severe forms dehydration, it is possible for you to experience unconsciousness, possibly even brain oxygen deprivation that can lead to an aneurysm, heart attack, and even death.
- Compromised blood and oxygen circulation.These effects of dehydration cause low blood pressure, palpitations, and breathlessness. Movements may easily become uncoordinated. Again, you become more at risk for heart attack and stroke.
- Increased cholesterol levels. You may have already encountered the common recommendation for people with high cholesterol levels to keep drinking more water, and there’s plenty of scientific evidence now available to support that.
According to a study published in 1995, the researchers compared two groups of people who were asked to fast. One group did not receive anything while the other group was given salt and water supplementation during the fast. Blood tests revealed that those who did not supplement showed significantly higher levels of bad cholesterol.
- Decreased amount and frequency of urination. As your body becomes deprived of fluids, you also tend to feel the urge to urinate more seldom than normal. This condition can lead to multiple organ dysfunctions, infections, and the development of kidney stones.
- Muscle aches and pains. This is a sign that your body is overheating from lack of fluids and the cooling effect it brings to continue stretching and contracting muscles. As friction becomes greater, dehydration manifests as painful muscle cramps.
Dehydration sounds common and it may not bother you to know that you may be dehydrated. Knowing these 8 ill effects of dehydration, however, should make you change your mindset about this condition. Don’t wait until your body makes significant adjustments before you pick up that glass of water.
Angina is a renowned independent author. She is a skincare and beauty expert who is passionate to share insights related to beauty and skin care with the readers. She has completed her M.A. in literature and has been writing for this niche related topics from past 5 years.