TIM CHITWOOD: Wake up and wander to the bathroom

October 6, 2013 

With throats unslaked, with black lips baked, it is Monday Mail.


Today's opening is from "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, one of my favorites of the Romantic era of English literature. Most people know it from the line "Water, water, every where, nor any drop to drink."

Water water

One of our faithful correspondents named Stanley sends this advice on the healthful effects of drinking lots of water, to which you are welcome to add a grain of salt:

A friend sent this to me, and it could help you avoid some problems:

I asked my doctor why do people need to urinate so much at night time. Answer from my cardiac doctor -- gravity holds water in the lower part of your body when you are upright (legs swell). When you lie down and the lower body (legs and etc.) seeks level with the kidneys, it is then that the kidneys remove the water because it is easier. This then ties in with the last statement!

I knew you need your minimum water to help flush the toxins out of your body, but this was news to me. Correct time to drink water -- very important, from A cardiac specialist!

Drinking water at a certain time maximizes its effectiveness on the body: Two glasses of water after waking up helps activate internal organs, One glass of water 30 minutes before a meal helps digestion, One glass of water before taking a bath helps lower blood pressure, One glass of water before going to bed avoids stroke or heart attack.

I can also add to this: My friend's physician told him that water at bedtime will also help prevent night time leg cramps. Your leg muscles are seeking hydration when they cramp and wake you up with a charlie horse.

Dear Stanley:

Did your friend's cardiac specialist consider the risks of running into furniture when you get up in the pitch-dark middle of the night to stumble half-asleep to the bathroom?

No? May I then enlighten you with some from my own experiences? Consider these hazards:

• Crashing into a running floor fan.

• Smacking your forehead against a half-open bathroom door.

• Feeling so exhausted you try to lunge back onto the bed after relieving yourself, miss the bed and nearly crack your ribs when instead of the mattress your torso lands on a marble night stand.

• Falling down stairs.

• Stepping on sleeping dogs, waking them up, and prompting them to get up all excited, jump up on the bed and awaken anyone else in the room.

• Knocking the night stand phone off the hook, causing it to crash to the floor and set off that siren-like noise that warns you the phone's off the hook.

• Missing the toilet altogether.

Tim Chitwood, tchitwood@ledger-enquirer.com, 706-571-8508.

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