Does drinking too little water cause back pain?

by | May 14, 2023 | Back pain, chiropractic

Between each vertebra in our spine is a disc called the “intervertebral disc” which acts like a cushion, cushioning the movements of the vertebrae and allowing us to bend and flex while preventing the bones from rubbing against each other. In the centre of the disc, the nucleus is also composed of water.

Our discs rehydrate while we sleep. However, sleep alone is not enough to keep our discs adequately hydrated to prevent pain and degeneration.

In fact, it is very difficult to keep your discs hydrated when you are in an upright position all day if there is also poor parallelism between vertebrae or vertebral misalignment. Therefore, it is essential to focus on drinking enough water.

When we allow our discs to become dehydrated, they cannot provide the protection and support the spine needs.

Our intervertebral discs are vital because they absorb the impact of our movements, protect the spine from wear and tear, and help us stay mobile and maintain proper posture.

Water also keeps joints lubricated, reducing the effects of muscle activity or unexpected strain. Also, back pain could be an indicator of a kidney infection due to dehydration. 

Hydrate to avoid back pain

Drink at least two liters of water a day:

  • Carry a small bottle of water with you at all times.
  • If you find it hard to drink enough water, try to add fresh lemon, lime, mint, cucumber or  strawberries etc. to make your water more palatable.
  • Track the number of glasses of water you drink per day on your mobile phone. You can download an app that tracks how much water you are drinking daily and set reminders so you don’t forget. 
  • Add electrolytes to your water on your heavy workout days.

When you go to the toilet, pay attention to the colour of your urine, it allows you to get a real-time measurement of your hydration level. A pale yellow colour indicates good hydration.

Back pain and chiropractic treatment

While dehydration is not the only cause of back pain, if you suffer from vertebral deviation, back subluxation or a disc injury due to dehydration, chiropractic treatment can reverse the damage caused.

Several studies show that chiropractic adjustments performed by a chiropractic professional are effective in reducing acute back pain and disc protrusions.

During the chiropractic evaluation, the source of your back pain will be identified to address the best personalised treatment plan.