Q: Doc please help. I am 27 weeks pregnant, I have craving for water, I drink more than 4L a day and that worries me. I asked the nurse at the clinic she said it’s a good thing, water cleans the bladders. What worries is that I feel like I abuse drinking water and I overdose it.
A: Water needs increase during pregnancy, what with production of amniotic fluid, increased blood volume morning sickness et al. But there is really no specific recommended amount of water to take when pregnant because it differs depending on activity level, weather conditions, body weight etc. Usual recommendations are for about 8 glasses of water per day from all sources – water, milk, soup etc. This is not even up to 2 liters and so if indeed you are taking up to 4 liters a day, please consult your doctor. It is indeed possible to have too much of a good thing. This could really just lead to you visiting the bathroom more often or actually lead to water intoxication. Water intoxication is a situation in which massive amounts of water are taken in a short time, giving the kidney way too much work to do with resultant headache, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, brain swelling later etc.
Every pregnancy is different and unique. So discuss your concerns with your doctor. He’s in the best position to know if you are overdoing it.
All the best!