Many of us can go days and even weeks without drinking any water but make up for it through other sources such as coffee, soda, other liquid foods, clear soups, fruits, vegetables or any other drink.
However at least half of the composition of our body is made up of water which is why every cell in our body depends on it and reducing the intake of water can lead to dehydration and this can have a very severe effect on our physical health and mental health.
What Is Dehydration?
Dehydration, as mentioned above, occurs due to less intake of water. It occurs when the water being lost by your body is more than the water being put in. We are constantly using and losing water through respiration, sweating, and urine. Even when we sleep, water keeps getting out of our systems while we exhale.
How Does Dehydration Affect Us?
Even though mild dehydration occurs when 1.5% of the body’s normal water level decreases but even 1% of decrease in the body’s water level can affect the mood directly. Dehydration can also make it more difficult to concentrate and produce a headache.
Dehydration can affect the brain which in turn affects your mental health as well as your physical health.
There are three ways that dehydration can affect your mental health.
- Dehydration Leads To Fatigue
This is the first way that dehydration can affect you mentally. Heat cramps are the first sign of fatigue caused by dehydration. Some other warning signs include exhaustion, heavy sweating, and extreme thirst. The only way to prevent yourself from fatigue is to drink a glass of water right away.
- Hallucination And Confusion
Dehydration can get very severe if you reach a point where you start to hallucinate. If you do hit this point then you must seek medical treatment right away because hallucinations due to dehydration can get you shaken up badly.
Also keep in mind that if you are out in the head and confusion starts to set in, take action immediately. The first thing to do when this happens is to get away from the heat as soon as you can and go in an air-conditioned room or restaurant nearby- even a shade will suffice and then grab a sports drink and gulp it all down.
A sports drink is advised during dehydration because if you lack in electrolytes that water may not have any effect on you which is why a sports drink or water with salt in it is advised to cure dehydration.
- Dehydration Can Lead To Suicidal Thoughts
When you decrease water level in your body the chemicals in the brain- neurotransmitters lose their balance, and when this happens, the brain starts to experience difficulties. This difficulty leads to you having an upset mood, and since the brain keeps control of your anxiety, if you undergo dehydration you may no longer have control over anxiety; this leads to an increase I suicide during heat waves.
Not only does dehydration affect the mental health but it also affects the physical health. Since the human brain consists 75% of water, dehydration can alter how we thing and feel by slowing down the circulation of blood. This lowers the blood flow in the body and not enough oxygen reaches the organs which stress the whole body system.
This also makes the heart work harder to push the blood around and the thermoregulatory system in our body is stressed due to dehydration.
To make our body and brain work properly and to keep our physical and mental health vigorous is it very important to stay hydrated.