Back Pain: Could Dehydration Be The Cause?


Health junkie or not, you know how important it is to drink water. The human body is made up of over 50% water, and if you aren’t properly hydrated, your body will feel the negative effects of dehydration like dizziness, headaches, and even fainting. Not only that, but dehydration could even be the cause of your back pain!

Back Pain & Dehydration

Dehydration and back pain are linked by the small discs in your spine. Those jelly-like discs are almost 75% water! The outer ring, or nucleus pulposus, and the inner ring are mostly water. In fact, you could be up to a 1/2 an inch shorter by the end of the day due to water slowly being released from your spinal discs. When you are asleep, your discs are rehydrated, and you back to your full height when you wake up. Your discs will try to stay hydrated throughout the day, but it can be challenging when you are mostly upright. To keep your discs hydrated, be sure to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day.

Height isn’t the only reason to keep the discs of your spine hydrated. If you don’t, they cannot properly protect and support your spine. The jelly-like discs are located between every two vertebrae and their job is to absorb the shock from everyday movements while protecting your spine form wear and tear. When they can’t function as they should due to dehydration, additional stress is put on the spine which can cause pain and swelling.

How To Tell If You Are Dehydrated

Here are 10 signs that indicate dehydration:

  1. Headaches

  2. Dry skin

  3. Dark urine

  4. Muscle cramps

  5. Fatigue

  6. Anger

  7. Bad Breath

  8. Fever

  9. Dry Eyes/Blurry Vision

  10. Dizziness

You know how important it is to stay hydrated, but you also know it isn’t always so easy. Make a goal for yourself to consume at least a 1/2 ounce of water per pound that you weight. So, if you weigh 180 pounds, try to consume 90 ounces of water throughout the day. The health of your spine depends on it!

How To Stay Hydrated

  • Keep water on hand throughout the day

  • Consume electrolytes when exercising or spending long periods of time outdoors

  • Add fresh fruit or herbs to your water to make it more appealing

  • Load up on fresh raw fruits and vegetables

  • Monitor your urine

  • Buy a reusable water bottle with a design you enjoy so you will want to carry your water bottle with you and you can feel good about a positive environmental contribution

  • Set a timer or download an app to keep track of you water intake

What are your tips to stay hydrated? Let us know in the comments section below! If you think dehydration may be the source of your back pain and you want to hear from the Newnan’s best chiropractors, click here to contact us!