How Come Dehydration Can Ruin Your Back?

No one expected that pain in the back could be caused by dehydration, but in reality, that is very much true. Why? Did you know that the spine and spinal vertebrae hold a surprisingly large amount of water? If you didn't, now you know.

This means that even a minor lack of water will affect your backs' motion and health.

By now, you all know that dehydration in all stadiums will affect your overall health, make your body weak, and impact your stamina and performance . This especially considers people who play sports professionally or recreationally, since according to the WHO (World Health Organization), dehydration can cause injuries and even fatal complications. The problem is that those injuries are often impossible to predict.

How can dehydration mess up your back?

A woman with back pain

The first thing you need to know is that your spine repairs itself constantly. This is not a miracle. But the repair rate of your spine directly depends on the amount of water you intake daily. If you drink enough water, your spine will repair and rehydrate itself during the night.

The spine is constructed from vertebrates, and between each one, there is a disc with a strong outer ring that supports 25% of your body weight and soft gel substance in the middle that supports 75% of your body weight. This gel middle area mainly consists of water, and that is how it provides cushioning to your spine and prevents bones from rubbing on each other.

The spine

The disc's main role is to absorb your movements' shocks and prevent injuries on your spine. 

So when you dehydrate the gelatinous material inside, your discs are not able to replenish lost water. This means discs will collapse and your spine won't be able to hold the weight of your body. You will experience serious pressure on the sensitive nerves exiting the spinal column.

These discs require water to function properly, but since the water in them leaks out during the day because of movements, you can conclude how not drinking enough water can cause major complications. If there is no available water to soak up on, the discs will shrink down, which will lead to less support for your back.

Most common complications that occur when your spinal discs are dehydrated:

1. Shooting pain and weakness in the legs

A woman with pain in her left leg

2. Absence of reflexes in the legs

A doctor testing a patience' leg

3. Tingling and numbness in the legs

A person rubbing their foot

4. Bulging and herniated spots on the spine

A woman holding her back

5. Issues with pelvic organs

A woman holding her back

6. Limited movements

A tired woman leaning to a wall

7. Severe back pain

A woman with pain in her neck and back

How to recover from dehydration-induced back pain?

If you are experiencing unusual back problems, you might have been drinking less water than your body requires. Low water intake is usually not the main cause of weak discs, but it certainly triggers the situation.

However, all serious back and spine issues originate from dehydration. The simplest way to prevent all the pain and complications is to not wait to drink water when you feel the thirst. Drink it regularly and drink it plenty, especially before, during, and after a workout.

A woman sipping water

One of the first signs of dehydration is dark urine, so keep an eye on that. If you notice any change, just increase your water intake, and you will soon see the improvement.


The solution to most common health problems such as headache, dizziness, fatigue, pain in the back, skin inflammations & irritations, and bad breath lies in proper hydration. As you may know, our body mainly consists of water, and that water must be replenished daily.

If you drink less water than your body needs, you will soon end up dehydrated, which will gradually lead to some problems mentioned above.

Honestly, it is not so hard to stay hydrated!

Include more water-rich foods in your diet, substitute coffee with herbal tea, avoid sugary drinks, and always carry a water tracker bottle with you. This handy little bottle will not let you forget to take a sip of the holy drink.

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