Tag Archive: caffeine

  1. Do You Have an Energy Drink Addiction?

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    energy drinks addiction caffeine

    When waking up in the morning is difficult, energy drinks can come to the rescue. It can feel like taking a huge adrenaline hit and getting lots of energy to start the day. However, when a person cannot wake up without drinking an energy drink or continues to drink more than necessary and cannot stop, it may indicate addiction. Find out the signs of addiction.

    Energy Drinks

    The popularity of energy drinks has skyrocketed and so has the occurrence of energy drink addiction. It is estimated as much of 50% of young adults consume energy drinks on a regular basis and demographic that increases its energy drink use the most is adults aged 40 and older. Energy drinks may provide a sugary, caffeine based boost but can also be dangerous.

    Caffeine Addiction

    Energy drink addiction is addiction to caffeine. If a person cannot function without a cup of coffee or an energy drink in the morning or a headache is nothing, it means the body is addicted to caffeine. Unpleasant withdrawal symptoms can occur. The average 16-oz cup of coffee has 170 mg of caffeine. The symptoms include:

    • Headaches
    • Fatigue
    • Weakness
    • Inability to concentrate
    • Sleepiness
    • Muscle tension
    • Irritability
    • Depression
    • Anxiety
    • Nausea

    Withdrawal may start 12-24 hours after caffeine is stopped and reach peak about 12-48 hours later. It may take a week or more for symptoms to abate.

    Dangers

    The dangers of energy drinks are based on the high level of caffeine. Many energy drinks have between 100 mg to 200 mg of caffeine per serving. One of the energy drinks with the most concentrated caffeine content can contain 350 mg of caffeine. The problem with energy drinks is many people don’t realize the amount of caffeine consumed with several drinks a day. Energy drink addiction can cause:

    • Insomnia
    • Nervousness
    • Headaches
    • Increased or irregular heartbeat
    • Anxiety
    • Confusion
    • Delirium
    • Muscle trembling
    • Vomiting

    Caffeine mixed with alcohol can cause dangerous scenarios of intoxication mixed with decreased awareness of impairment. A person may feel less drunk but the person is more drunk. The trend towards emergency room visits has increased greatly as the popularity becomes more popular. People must be aware of the risks of consuming too much caffeine. People need to be aware of how much caffeine is in energy drinks consumed and track daily caffeine intake. An extra boost may be too high but can progress to dangerous territory quickly. Alleviating the amount of energy drinks consumed can go a long way towards helping a person move past addiction.

     

    Sustain Recovery provides help to adolescents who need support for addiction through treatment programs. Clients who need short or longer term solutions are able to be given the help needed on an individual basis. Call us to find out more on how we can help your adolescent through recovery.

  2. Caffeine Addiction is a Telling Glimpse into the Pattern of Relapse

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    caffeine addictionMany people have experienced a “need” for a cup of coffee when they wake up in the morning and before they face any of the issues of their day. When they do not get their coffee, they might experience headaches or an inability to concentrate. They can become irritable and angry. Overall, the physical symptoms of caffeine withdrawal are the same as those experienced by individuals who are addicted to more dangerous substances. Even after those symptoms subside, a caffeine addict might still find himself craving the warmth, taste, and aroma of a hot cup of coffee. Those cravings mirror the type of cravings that drug addict experience, and that can result in a relapse after all physical withdrawal symptoms have ended.

    Caffeine is a Drug

    Caffeine is, in every sense, an addictive drug. Its addictive qualities are not perceived to be as nefarious as the addictive qualities of substances like heroin or methylamphetamines, but it is addictive nonetheless. Caffeine increases energy levels and promotes wakefulness, but it can also lead to headaches, nausea, dehydration, and restlessness. As a person consumes more and more caffeine, his body and nervous system develop a tolerance to it and he requires greater amounts of caffeine to achieve the same stimulating effects. Like other addictive drugs, caffeine stimulates the production of certain neurotransmitters in a person’s brain. When neurotransmitter levels begin to drop, as happens when a person stops consuming caffeine, that person’s brain sends signals out the increase cravings for the caffeine.

    Treating Caffeine Addiction

    Caffeine addictions can typically be interrupted within one or two weeks, but the psychological draw of caffeine can remain long after a physical connection has been broken. Again, as with other addictive substances, these cravings are analogous to the cravings that cause relapses in drug addicts. Because so many people consume caffeine and develop caffeine addictions through consumption of coffee, colas, energy drinks, and other beverages, the craving patterns they feel when they stop drinking caffeinated beverages can give them strong insights and a better understanding of the much stronger cravings that a drug addict might experience.

    Some research has suggested that caffeine addiction and the mechanisms which create that addiction can be a gateway to drug or alcohol abuse. A person who is a casual or regular user of drugs or alcohol might be tempted to alleviate the discomfort associated with caffeine withdrawal by self-medicating with drugs or alcohol. Caffeine also prevents the absorption of certain vitamins that a person needs to support healthy metabolism. Low levels of those nutrients can make a person feel lethargic or cranky, which can further increase cravings for some substance that can give that person a quick pick-me-up. Addiction counselors will often try to limit their patients’ caffeine intake to prevent these overlapping cravings.

    For the time being and likely well into the future, public health officials have no intention of banning caffeine or listing it as a controlled substance. Rather, they are working to create a greater awareness of how caffeine cravings might have a crossover effect with relapses in drug and alcohol addiction.

    If you have questions about your own caffeine intake or on how your reliance on caffeine might increase your risks of drug or alcohol abuse, please call Sustain Recovery Services at (949) 407-9052. We will not take your morning coffee away from you, but we can help you to gain a better understanding of how your brain and body are reacting to that coffee.

I first met Sayeh in November of 2013 just after my 15 year old daughter had been admitted to a residential treatment program. As part of the program I was required to attend 2-3 AlAnon meetings a week. Sayeh attended the same AlAnon meetings as well as Alumni events as I. It soon became apparent to me that Sayeh had a heart for recovery, program, and God. When I was encouraged to get a sponsor I didn’t hesitate. Dependable, respectful, kind and generous of spirit, she exudes an inner peace that I hope to achieve with her loving guidance, as I work my own program. She is patient, & full of wisdom that she is always happy to share with her sponsees and fellow parents. I am so grateful our journeys brought us together.

Megan
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