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Published on June 15, 2017

H2O for the Mind

water helps with depression

Drinking water typically is associated with staying physically healthy and fit, but did you know that it affects your ability to think and your mental health, too? When you do not have enough water in your system, you become dehydrated, and may feel light-headed and have trouble focusing on simple tasks. This may in turn make you irritable and/or confused.

Dehydration also directly impacts mood. Many people experience anxiety, even panic, along when dehydrated. If you experience depression, not drinking enough water makes the condition worse by contributing to fatigue, low energy and headaches.

Getting your six to eight glasses of water during the dog days of summer can be especially challenging, but the heat makes it even more important. Your body loses water when you sweat under the hot summer sun and even when you breathe out water vapor.

Experiencing some of the above symptoms even with the right amount of water? There may be other factors at play. Bryan Medical Center Mental Health encourages you to check in with yourself. Grab a cool glass of water, sit down, and take a brief online mental health screening.

dave miers

About Dr. Dave Miers

Dave Miers, PhD, is the counseling and program development manager for mental health services at Bryan Medical Center in Lincoln, Neb.

He helped establish the Nebraska State Suicide Prevention Coalition in 1999 and chaired/co-chaired this Coalition until 2017. He currently serves as the past co-chair. Dr. Miers is a member of the leadership group for the Lincoln/Lancaster County Suicide Prevention Coalition. Dr. Miers has published research and co-authored a chapter in the Routledge International Handbook of Clinical Suicide Research focusing on family survivors of a child suicide. Dr. Miers helped develop the Lincoln Lancaster Local Outreach to Suicide Survivors (LOSS) team in Lincoln, Neb. He also helped develop other LOSS teams in Nebraska and is active with LOSS team development on a national level.

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