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Medical Myth: Always Drink 8-12 Glasses of Water a Day

by Arkansas Urology on Wednesday, June 19, 2019

It’s important to stay properly hydrated every day for a variety of reasons. Your body literally depends on water to stay alive, and drinking fluids is crucial when it comes to maintaining the function of every system in your body, from your brain to your muscles. While drinking eight to 12 glasses day is typically what you hear, that advice may not be the best for you.

The truth is the answer is different for everyone. Older adults have a higher risk than younger adults of becoming dehydrated, especially during the hotter months of the year. If you work outside or exercise a lot, you’ll need to drink more water per day than someone who doesn’t sweat as often. If you take certain medications, such as a diuretic, you need to drink more water than the average person since you urinate more often.

If you have overactive bladder, you may be hesitant to drink a lot of water out of fear of having more accidents or excessive trips to the restroom. However, drinking plenty of water is one of the best things you can do for OAB. It’s best to take sips throughout the day instead of drinking a lot of water at once. When you’re drinking enough, your urine will be light yellow or clear. If your urine is dark, it means you aren’t getting enough fluids, and you’re at risk for developing a urinary tract infection.

Drinking too much water can also do more harm than good if you have certain health conditions, such as thyroid disease or kidney problems. It’s best to speak to your doctor and come up with a plan that works for you specifically. While you may have been taught that 8-12 glasses per day are necessary for everyone, that isn’t the standard. It’s a common myth. You may need fewer than eight glasses a day to stay healthy, or you may require more than twelve glasses a day depending on unique factors and conditions.

Would you like to discuss your specific needs with one of our medical professionals? Schedule an appointment with us today!