Does Dehydration Affect Your Spine?

Drinking enough water each day is crucial as it keeps your body functioning properly. Our body is made up of over 50% water and when you are not properly hydrated, you can suffer from dehydration which includes headaches and dizziness. Dehydration could even cause spinal discs to lose water, resulting in back pain and impair spine health.

Dehydration and Spine Health [1]

The discs between each vertebra are filled with a jelly-like substance that is composed of 75% water. They are made of 80 % water therefore at the end of the day, you could be an inch shorter than you were in the morning because the water is lost from those discs throughout the day. Those discs stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids and they rehydrate at night while you are sleeping.

These discs are between every vertebrae and they absorb shock daily which protects your spine. When you are dehydrated, the spinal discs can’t support your spine as they should normally.

spine dehydration and laser therapy

Causes of Dehydration

It is normal to lose water daily by sweating, breathing and through tears and saliva. If you lose too much water and do not drink and eat to replenish lost water, you can get dehydrated. You can lose more water than usual with:

  • Fever
  • Diarrhea and vomiting
  • Excessive sweating
  • Urinating from diuretics- such as coffee, tea and alcohol

Many people don't feel thirsty until they're already dehydrated. That's why it's important to increase water intake during hot weather or when you're ill.

Effects of dehydration include:

  • Spine pain and back pain
  • Bulging discs
  • Less mobility of the spine

Signs when you are dehydrated:

  • Bad breath
  • Fatigue and headaches
  • Dry skin
  • Dark urine
  • Dry eyes
  • Dizziness

The symptoms of dehydrated discs are typically an extreme pain in the lower back and numbness in the legs. The following symptoms are some red flags:

Signs of a dehydrated disc:

  • Little bulges on the spine
  • Shooting pain through the legs
  • Numbness and tingling sensation in legs
  • Weakness in leg muscles

Stay hydrated is important especially when it comes to protect your spine health. Follow the tips below to help your body hydrate the disc so that your back remains healthy and well protected.

Tips to stay hydrated:

  • Eat plenty fruits and veggies
  • Drink 1 to 1.5L of water each day
  • Gradually drink water throughout the day
  • Stay hydrated when you exercise

Low level laser aids in disc repair by using energy produced by light. Light stimulates disc repair by oxygenating the tissue, increase blood flow and increasing the amount of energy available to the cells in the disc.

It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle which optimally supports spinal health. At Lakeside Laser, our experienced and holistic Laser technicians can provide information and resources about living a healthy lifestyle to improve overall better health outcomes. If you have any enquiries or would like to book an appointment, feel free to contact one of our friendly staff on 9300 0095 or visit our website at


1. Raj P. P. (2008). Intervertebral disc: anatomy-physiology-pathophysiology-treatment. Pain practice : the official journal of World Institute of Pain, 8(1), 18–44.

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