On average, you shouldn’t need to visit the restroom more than about 12 times a day. If you find yourself needing to go multiple times every hour, stop chugging your water. At this point, it’s not healthy.
When you drink too much water, your cells don’t have enough sodium and potassium to balance things out. This leads to there being too much water for the cells to handle comfortably, causing problems in some organs. For example, when your brain cells are swollen, you can easily get a headache, if not other, more severe symptoms.
When you drink too much water, your sodium levels plummet and are diluted. This is called Hyponatremia, a condition often found in athletes. Everything from muscle cramps to dizziness can be caused by this condition.
Abnormally Low Potassium Levels
Your potassium levels can drop when you drink too much water. This mineral is supposed to maintain healthy blood pressure, fluid balance, and muscle coordination. It needs water, but too much can be a bad thing. Nausea is a key sign that you’re suffering from hypokalemia, as this condition is called, so be sure to grab a banana.
When your muscles aren’t getting enough electrolytes, you’ll often experience muscle cramps at unexpected times. This is why sports drinks were invented, as they both hydrate and replenish electrolytes.
Kidneys filter your blood, keeping it clear of toxins and other harmful substances. When you drink excessive amounts of water, you flood the kidneys, forcing so much liquid through them that they can’t do a good job.
Drinking too much water also affects your heart. The more water you drink, the more water is absorbed into your blood. The more blood you have, the harder your heart works. The heart is strong, but you should still try to avoid overhydration for its sake.
Overhydration leads to exhaustion for two reasons: the first is that your electrolytes have been so diluted that your body has trouble functioning. The second is that as all those fluids are pushed through your kidneys, your hormone levels are imbalanced.
If you carry a water bottle that you are constantly drinking and refilling, you are probably at risk of overhydration. You begin to drink water out of habit and boredom, not because need the water. Try to limit yourself to try not to drink more than 30 ounces an hour.
Lack of Sleep
Because you’re waking up so much to go to the bathroom, you will have trouble sleeping. Urination is definitely an easy way to tell if you’re drinking too much or too little, but if you’re having trouble sleeping at night, it’s probably a safe bet to assume you could stand to drink a little less, at least in the hours before bed.
Because your body has so much extra fluid, it needs to get stored somewhere. This means your hands, feet, and lips will often swell, and nobody wants that.
Drinking When You’re Not Thirsty
Your body has clear signals to tell you that you need to drink more — listen to them. If you aren’t thirsty, stop drinking.
Because of the processes we use to purify most of our water, drinking too much water can actually give us too much of certain minerals. One such mineral is iron, and this can negatively affect your liver.
Chlorine is often used to purify our water and drinking too much chlorine for years and years can lead to an increased risk for bladder cancer. When you can, drink bottled water.
If you start feeling weird and don’t know why, look no further than the bottle of water in your hand. Because of the imbalances and dilution that drinking too much water can cause, you’re likely to experience high levels of confusion.
When you have drank too much water and your brain cells have swollen too much, you are put at risk of going into a coma. This only happens in the most extreme of circumstances, but it just goes to show that too much of a good thing can be a bad thing.
As water floods your brain, making the cells therein swell, you could possibly have seizures. Drinking too much water can have severe, long-term consequences.
As with anything consumed in excess, it is possible to die. You would have to drink a lot of water for this to happen, but it has happened from time to time. It’s not a far stretch, so make sure you’re watching what you’re drinking.