ZocdocAnswersAre there any diseases caused by lack of water?

Question

Are there any diseases caused by lack of water?

I don't feel dehydrated or anything like that but I probably don't drink as much water as I should. Can this end up causing disease if you go years and years without getting enough water?

Answer

There are no diseases that can be caused by not drinking enough water as long as you are getting enough fluids in general. Physicians used to give the advise of "drink plenty of fluids" to everyone, which we have found is not necessary. There are instance when dehydration can be avoided by make sure that you drink a lot of fluids. One is if you are sick and have a high fever. Dehydration is common in these times, especially if you have vomiting or diarrhea. The second is if you are exerting yourself for a prolonged time, and don't have access to fluids. Otherwise your body will take care of itself. Your thirst response is very strong and will encourage you to drink if it is necessary. Therefore, I think you should just consume as much water as your body drives you to drink. If you are still concerned about how much you are consuming, you can bring it up with your primary care physician at your next visit. Your doctor will likely ask you how many cups of water you consume per day, and if he or she is at all concerned, then you may provide a urine sample to see if there is anything abnormal. Good luck.

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