How To Tell You're Drinking Enough Water

5 Signs You Aren’t Drinking Enough Water

Even if you keep a 32 oz bottle with you at the gym...

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Between the myriad of non-water beverages at our fingertips and the constant craving for a quick, cheap meal which comes with being a millennial— it seems that many of us forget to drink enough water. It's flavorless and even boring to some, but shouldn't be neglected so as to have a healthy lifestyle! According to Business Insider, "[r]esearch shows that as little as one percent dehydration negatively affects your mood, attention, memory, and motor coordination." Not only that, but "[w]hen your dehydrated body is 'pushed' — such as when exercising or faced with heat stress — the risk of exhaustion or collapse increases… [and] you [are more susceptible] to faint, for instance, when you stand up too quickly."

Although it may seem obvious that you are dehydrated if you are thirsty, those with an active lifestyle may find it more nebulous. So, in order to better avoid the risks which come from being dehydrated, here are five signs that you aren't drinking enough water:

1. Dark urine.

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This is the most obvious one. Although health professionals agree that your urine should contain a bit of a yellow tint (if it doesn't, you are overhydrated), it shouldn't be darker than a "transparent yellow." Anything darker than a dark, cloudy yellow you should see a doctor for.

2. You get a lot of headaches.

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When you're dehydrated, the brain, which is mostly water, shrinks and triggers the pain receptors surrounding it. Additionally, less oxygen reaches the brain since your blood volume has dropped. So, if you've had a headache for a bit, maybe drink a glass of water and see if that helps.

3. You're foggy/cloudy.

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I get this one a lot. If anybody knows me, they know I'm a bit of ditz, so the last thing I need is to be even more out of focus. Because dehydration affects the amount of oxygen that reaches the brain, if not only causes headaches but can impair its functioning. So, if you find yourself forgetting things too easily or taking forever to understand a concept, drink a glass of water. It may help you think better!

4. Leg cramps

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This is the worst one. If you've ever had a leg cramp, you know what I'm talking about. I had my first leg cramp one especially bike-filled summer as a kid, and I remember distinctly praying to God and asking "why" amidst my crying.

When someone gets a leg cramp, their muscles tense and a sharp pain permeates their leg muscles. Not only does it hurt to move it, but often it's tensed in an uncomfortable position, causing the sufferer to move it despite the extreme pain. Most people get them at night, while lying down. So, if you find yourself waking up to your leg unbearably tensed up, drink some water.

5. Intense sugar cravings after a workout

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Glycogen is an essential component for cellular respiration stored in one's tissues, especially the muscles. Its primary composition is of carbohydrates and decreases after an intense workout. They decrease even more rapidly if you don't drink enough water. Subsequently, people have reported extreme cravings for sugary snacks after working out. I've fallen prey to this myself, my weakness being sugary cereal like Frosted Mini-Wheats or Honey Bunches of Oats. So, instead of jumping on that ice cream in the freezer, have a glass of water and see how you feel after.

So, to reiterate: if you've noticed, any of these possibly foreign symptoms plague you since you've been working out, drink a glass of water to feel relief.

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won't see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won't laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won't go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They'll miss you. They'll cry.

You won't fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won't get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won't be there to wipe away your mother's tears when she finds out that you're gone.

You won't be able to hug the ones that love you while they're waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won't be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won't find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won't celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won't turn another year older.

You will never see the places you've always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You'll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges, and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it's not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don't let today be the end.

You don't have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It's not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I'm sure you're no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won't do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you'll be fine." Because when they aren't, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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An Incurable Disease Doesn't Change The Love I Have For You

Because one day the one you love the most is fine and the next day they're not, it causes devastation you never truly recover from.

nadoty
nadoty
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Loving someone with an incurable disease is the most emotionally straining thing I have ever experienced.

My significant other and I have been together for almost six years. During the summer of 2018, we all noticed the significant changes he was going through. He had lost around fifty pounds and had a lack of appetite. We had figured something was going on, however, we didn't realize it was anything serious.

Fast forward to the Fall semester of 2018. I had visited my boyfriend and we had expressed certain concerns, such as, through the night I would try and get him to stop uncontrollably itching his legs to the point of bleeding, or that he was looking a little yellow and was exhausted all the time. After seeing his sister in November, while I was at school, she pleaded with him to go to urgent care because he did not look good. He was yellow, exhausted, and very sickly looking. We didn't realize that the urgent care visit would be the precedent of the rest of our lives.

After coming home for Thanksgiving and spending a week straight in the hospital with him, it finally set in that something was not right. Between all the vomit, getting moved for testing, the weakness, the constant calling for medications because the pain was so severe, and the almost month-long stay in the hospital, it hit me full force that something was really wrong. Words will never truly describe the emotions I was feeling, or the burden of my thoughts that I felt were too selfish to pass on anyone, so I kept them to myself.

When we finally got the diagnosis, we were surprised. PSC, otherwise known as Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis, is an incurable liver disease that affects the bile ducts which become scarred and inflamed, more likely than not lead to cirrhosis and an inevitable transplant. There was no cure, rather the only solution was a liver transplant, and even then the disease can be recurring.

I was thinking selfishly. I was torn in two. What would our future look like? Could we have children? Could we ever do the things we used to?

Loving someone with an incurable disease is a mix of emotions. There is a constant fear in the back of my mind that he is going to wake up in intense pain and have to be rushed to the hospital. There is a constant fear of every time waiting for the bi-weekly blood test results to come back, in fear that his Bilirubin spiked again or he is undergoing a flare up and needs to be hospitalized. There is a constant anxiety that one day he's going to be fine, and the next day he won't be. Even the simple things, such as laying beside one another, was a constant fear I had, due to the pain he was in every day. What if I hit him in my sleep on accident? What if I accidentally hugged a little too tightly and caused him pain?

Loving someone with an incurable disease can be a fluctuation of emotions, however, he makes it worth it.

nadoty
nadoty

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