Why Staying Hydrated Is Good for Both Conception and Pregnancy

341 people found this helpful - 30 Comments
Susan Watson

By Susan Watson, a Registered Dietitian

Hydration is a primary need for humans. Every system in your body depends on, and requires water to function. Therefore, it's important to note that drinking plenty of water, and staying hydrated is essential when trying to conceive.

The human body is composed largely of water, and water plays many crucial roles in maintaining health. Some functions include, body temperature regulation, transport of nutrients, hormonal and metabolic reactions, cellular functions, aids in digestion, and carries nutrients throughout your body. Water also naturally flushes out toxins in the body, and keeps all of your reproductive cells, and organs functioning properly.

What are the benefits of drinking water preconception and pregnancy?

When trying to conceive it is important for both women and men to stay hydrated to ensure that both the ovaries and testes are functioning at top capacity.

For women, dehydration can affect cervical mucus, which plays an important role in transporting and protecting the sperm to the fallopian tubes for egg fertilization.

For men, semen production and semen volume can be negatively impacted by dehydration too.

Dehydration is never an ideal condition for your body, and it can be especially devastating preconception and during pregnancy.

Sperm quality

Before conception, dehydration can impact male fertility, Without optimal hydration, male sperm count and quality may be diminished.

Cervical fluid

Without enough water, a woman's cervical mucus may become more hostile to sperm. Learn how to detect fertility with cervical mucus. So if you are trying to conceive it is important to keep that water bottle handy.


Drinking water allows your hormones to travel throughout your body. Hormonal imbalances are the cause for many fertility problems, so ensure your hormones are getting to the right places by drinking enough water when trying to conceive.

During pregnancy

During pregnancy, dehydration can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness and cramps. Late in pregnancy, dehydration can have more severe effects, and has been known to cause contractions and bring on pre-term labor.

Drinking lots of water during pregnancy can ease or prevent constipation, haemorrhoids and excess water retention. Staying hydrated can also ward off the all-too-common problem of recurring urinary tract infections that can take place during pregnancy.

Some women even believe that drinking water relieves the symptoms of morning sickness and indigestion.

How much fluid does one need to drink to stay hydrated?

Fluids come from water and the beverages you drink, but can also come from the foods you eat like fruits and vegetables.

Water is one of the best fluid choices, but it is a myth that you need 8 cups a day to stay healthy.

Fluid requirements can vary between individuals, but are dependent on your age, gender and activity level.

Climate conditions, such as humidity and hot weather also play a role in your fluid requirements.

A general recommendation for keeping your body hydrated is to consume the following:

You can log your water intake in Ovulation Calculator.

What are the signs of dehydration?

The body looses water through many different ways like sweating, urinating, and bowel movements. Therefore, it is important to stay hydrated, and to replace your lost stores daily.

Figuring out if you have become dehydrated is not hard to too, and one simple way to tell if you are dehydrated is to look at the colour of your urine.

Urine may have a variety of colors. It usually ranges from a deep amber or honey color to a light straw color, with many golden variations in between. The color of urine can tell you a lot about your body. Here's a guide of urine colors, and what they indicate:

The colour of PEE:

Urine colour chart

Image source: NSW Ministry of Health

Other signs and symptoms of mild dehydration include:

Thirst, dry lips and mouth, flushed skin, tiredness, dizziness, fainting, irritability, headache, low blood pressure and increased heart rate. You can become dehydrated even before the signs appear. Therefore, it is important to drink fluids regularly, even before you feel thirsty.

Do you have a hard time remembering to stay hydrated?

Here are some tips:

Additional tips to keep up with your fluid requirements

Here are some more tips to help you drink enough and make drinking more enjoyable:

Most importantly, take it slow! Spread your water intake throughout the whole day. Don't try to drink it all at once! If your not used to drinking a lot of water, get used to it gradually over a couple of weeks.

Did you know? More is not always better!

Consuming too much water can cause an imbalance of electrolytes between the cells in your body and the extracellular fluid. This can lead to sever medical complications and can be potentially fatal.

Stick to the fluid recommendations mentioned above.

What about alcohol?

Consuming alcoholic beverages are not ideal while trying to conceive, in case a pregnancy occurs. However, consuming alcohol in moderation is o.k. (Remember the guidelines are no more than one drink a day for women, and one to two drinks a day for men).

The Colour of Pee: "Urine - Abnormal Color," MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia, National Institutes of Health: nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003139.htm
How much water are you drinking per day? Got a question or a comment?

New Join the Discussion!

  1. NneamakaTheodora Jul 19, 2016
    Water is very good to the body, I take a lot of water Too, mostly morning and before going to bed.
    1. Sarah (OC Team): Thanks for commenting Nneamaka! Yes it's important to get enough water. - (Jul 25, 2016)
    2. Hadijah: I do my best to stay hydrated also in the night. It's a good idea to keep the body hydrated. - (Oct 07, 2016)
    3. Poornima: I drink plenty of water daily. - (Dec 01, 2016)
    4. Edith: I drink a lot of water, but it makes me gain more weight. - (Jan 08, 2017)
  2. Jasmine Jul 26, 2016
    I drink a cup of cold of water every night before i go to sleep, is that good? Just asking.
    1. Sarah (OC Team): Yes, but make sure you try and drink 8 glasses a day. - (Jul 27, 2016)
  3. Clara Jul 27, 2016
    This is great
  4. Mary Aug 04, 2016
    I drink water a lot.
  5. Love Aug 09, 2016
    My cervix is not SHOWing. Is this caused by low intake of water?
    1. Christina (OC Team): Have a look at this article. There's a section about what to do if you have low cervical mucus https://www.ovulationcalculator.com/cervix-cervical-mucus/ - (Aug 09, 2016)
  6. Nwosu Aug 11, 2016
    Yes, water is good!
  7. Mzet Aug 17, 2016
    I hardly drink water. Thank you for the advice.
  8. Betty Aug 25, 2016
    I drink a lot of water.
    1. Christina (OC Team): That's great! Hydration is so important. - (Aug 25, 2016)
  9. Dorcas Aug 26, 2016
    Hi Sarah, is it normal to have a white discharge from my vagina seven (7) days after ovulation.
    1. Sarah (OC Team): Hi Dorcas, what's normal for one women can be different for another, that's why it's a good idea to track you cycle and learn your patterns. Please read this: https://www.ovulationcalculator.com/cervix-cervical-mucus/ - (Aug 26, 2016)
    2. Christina (OC Team): Some women notice clear or white CM after ovulation. Have a look at this article for more information https://www.ovulationcalculator.com/cervix-cervical-mucus/ - (Aug 26, 2016)
  10. Dorcas Aug 26, 2016
    I hardly drink water.
    1. Christina (OC Team): Water is very good for health and fertility. You should try to up your intake. - (Aug 26, 2016)
  11. Elfrida Aug 27, 2016
    Thanks Susan, knowledge, as they say, is power. I will certainly improve on my water intake.
  12. Efe Aug 27, 2016
    I hardly drink enough water.
  13. Ana-Maria Sep 10, 2016
    How about that drinking water before or while eating may affect digestion and the enzymes contributing to it. Is that true or is a myth?
    1. Christina (OC Team): I would suggest that you not drink excessively with a meal, but understand that the important thing is to get enough fluids throughout the day. - (Sep 10, 2016)
  14. Michelle Sep 11, 2016
    I drink a ton of water and my urine is often clear throughout the day. I had no idea that can cause me problems. I will try to pace myself more during the day. Very good article. Thank you!
  15. Anamarei Sep 24, 2016
    My menstuation started on Sept.16th to 18th. My question, is it natural? That I have a bleeding 25 now????
    1. Christina (OC Team): If the bleeding is light, it could be from ovulation. Have a look at this article. https://www.ovulationcalculator.com/ovulation-symptoms-signs/ - (Sep 25, 2016)
  16. Oladunni Sep 28, 2016
    I am very weepy this days and I get hungry very fast, like every 2hours. I also notice that my breasts are not full like before because my bra cup is now bigger than my breast. Am I pregnant or what? I am in my 27th day of a 30days cycle. Please, what do you think is happening?
    1. Christina (OC Team): Full and/or tender breasts are a sign of early pregnancy, but you may still be pregnant if you're experiencing the opposite. Only a test will tell. The good news is that you only have to wait 3-4 days before testing. Good luck! - (Sep 28, 2016)
  17. Abbey Sep 28, 2016
    I do take 8 liters of water per day. I hope that is not too much?
    1. Christina (OC Team): 8 liters equates to about 33.75 8-ounce glasses. That is way above the common recommendation of 8-12 8-oz glasses, but you should ask your doctor if you're concerned. - (Sep 28, 2016)
    2. Victoria: I am pregnant now thanks to Ovulation Calculator - (Dec 14, 2016)
    3. Christina (OC Team): Congratulations! - (Dec 15, 2016)
  18. Bilkisu Sep 29, 2016
    My period is irregular. I had it last month on the 15th and this month it came late on the 29th. I was having serious cramps. I thought I was pregnant.
  19. Bilkisu Sep 30, 2016
    I used to see my monthly cycle on the 15th or 20th, but this sept, it didn't come till the 29th. My cycle changed the moment I started taking vtimain E and folic acid. How am I going to calculate my cycle? I am confused.
    1. Christina (OC Team): You cycle should be the same length every month, but it's possible to have irregular cycles that vary in length. But if you were expecting your period on the 15th or 20th of this month, that's a large window. I'd suggest using the ovulation calculator in your account here to start tracking your periods. This is a good way to know when things change. - (Oct 01, 2016)
  20. NneamakaTheodora Oct 10, 2016
    Water is very good. I drink more than 10 glasses of water every day.
  21. Rossy Oct 11, 2016
    Hi, is it possible for me to have cervical mucus and still not ovulate?
    1. Christina (OC Team): It could be possible, but if you think that's what's happening you should talk to your doctor. - (Oct 11, 2016)
  22. Rossy Oct 13, 2016
    Hi, it's 2dpo. I have been spotting since yesterday. What do you think is wrong with me? I will be happy if I get a reply soon.
    1. Christina (OC Team): How have you been tracking ovulation? Is it possible that you ovulated earlier or later? Spotting could be a symptom of ovulation or implantation. Implantation typically occurs between 6-12 dpo. - (Oct 13, 2016)
  23. Rossy Oct 14, 2016
    Hi, I want to know if is possible for me to feel ovulation pains and still not ovulate. And is it ok to have sex the day of ovulation?
    1. Christina (OC Team): If you're having ovulation pain or cramping, you are likely ovulating. Having sex on the day of ovulation won't hurt your chances. Good luck! - (Oct 14, 2016)
  24. Doyin Oct 16, 2016
    Cramping after ovulation. I hope it is ok.
    1. Christina (OC Team): Cramping after ovulation could be from your menstrual period or implantation. Have a look at this article. https://www.ovulationcalculator.com/implantation-bleeding-or-period-quiz/ - (Oct 17, 2016)
  25. Janet Nov 03, 2016
    So if you don't drink not much water it can keep from GETTING pregnant! I have such a hard time drinking. It's really bad. Three is the most I can get in. How can I drink a more? I don't like a pinch of lemon or lime! I really want a baby. I have loss one from ectopic and only have one tube, so it's hard getting pregnant as it is and I'm 44, so please help me. I got do what I can.
    1. Christina (OC Team): How do you feel about herbal tea? - (Nov 04, 2016)
    2. Janet: Herbal tea is ok to drink when trying! I really didn't drink much tea because I can't have green tea or caffeine tea. But if we can have tea, I guess I can try drinking it. - (Nov 07, 2016)
  26. Mamab Nov 07, 2016
    I had my flow on the 16th of Oct and it ended on the 20th of Oct. I had sex from the 23rd of Oct through the 2nd of Nov. Can I get pregnant? And if yes, when can I test for pregnancy? Thanks
    1. Christina (OC Team): If you log your details into your account here, you'll get a prediction of your fertile window and an estimate on when you can test. Good luck! - (Nov 07, 2016)
  27. Saa Nov 09, 2016
    Thanks for the encouragement. I will increase my water intake.
  28. Migail Nov 15, 2016
    This is really good information. I should really consume more water. I do keep hydrated on a day-to-day basis by drinking tea, milk, juice/ fruit and water, but I consider my water intake lower than the rest. Since I am indeed trying to get pregnant, it would be beneficial to increase my water intake as much as I can.
  29. Funmilayo Nov 19, 2016
    Mmm! Ok, nice one. I just conceived and I take water when dehydrated, but the issue is that it has to be very cold. I cant if it's not from the fridge. Does it matter? And secondly, for someone who just conceived, does slicing lemon or lime in her water have any negative effect? Thank you.
  30. Love Jan 09, 2017
    Hi, my last period started on the 10th of Dec, 2016. I had lots of sex throughout my ovulation period. I am expecting that I should be pregnant because lately I'm having a little cramping. Normally, according to my cycle, today should be the start of my period. But I saw traces of blood on my pants. Am I pregnant?

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