Saturday, 25 February 2017

Chuckles Does Caffeine Withdrawal

Thank you to everyone who has recently sent best wishes over my sudden and miserable health issues these last ten days. My symptoms were very weird so I spoke to the local pharmacist this morning-and the first thing he asked was if I had stopped drinking coffee or energy drinks recently. I quit coffee about ten days ago and told him this, and he nodded and said 'caffeine withdrawal' which was a bit of a shock. I told him I only had one cup a day but he said that people with stress, nervous disorders, depression and anxiety should never consume caffeine even in small doses as it is bad for us and makes withdrawal worse.

Great. I am officially an addict in withdrawal! Here are the common symptoms of caffeine withdrawal and yes, I do have every single one of them except the vomiting:

-headache behind eyes and front of head
-sleepy
-irritable
-lethargy
-constipation
-depression
-muscle pain/stiffness/cramps
-lack of concentration
-insomnia
-flu symptoms
-nausea
-anxiety
-brain fog
-dizzy
-low blood pressure
-feeling faint
-heart rhythm abnormality 
-the shakes
-vomiting

The pharmacist said that 'if you feel better or more awake after a morning coffee, then you are at minimum mildly addicted' and should consider stopping. O. M. G. I never thought one little coffee each day was affecting my system to the extent that quitting would make me ill. That actually frightened me a bit. Then he cheered me up by saying on average the symptoms lasted two weeks and at worst TWO MONTHS! *gulps* That sounds like a riot on legs.

I am officially freaked out. This is a mild version of what you get with drug or alcohol withdrawal but I already understand why addicts don't want to experience it. I feel terrible right now. Walking to the kitchen leaves me out of breath, jelly legged, faint and with a nice bout of nausea and shakes. It's horrible! I'm exhausted and grumpy all the time. My guts are in turmoil. I want to sleep for a month. It's really awful.

Chuckles advice? Re-evaluate your caffeine habits! Check out this link to see how strong your addiction might be:

http://www.caffeineinformer.com/caffeine-addiction-diagnosis

Then, if you decide you want to stop taking it, PLEASE speak to a doctor or pharmacist for advice about gradual withdrawal. Trust me, you don't want to be having a dose of this!
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31 comments:

  1. Yuck, I went through caffeine withdrawal a couple years ago when I completely cut out caffeine. It was miserable! I stayed away from it for a few years but broke down and started drinking it again. I get terrible migraines and for some reason if I catch it at the very early onset of symptoms and chug a can of Pepsi, it sometimes helps. It's weird but it works.

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    1. It's been a long time since I felt so ill. I'm drinking water, fruit juices and smoothies which does help a bit as I can't stomach real food at all. I won't be taking things like Pepsi though as that has caffeine in it and wouldn't help me get through this!

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  2. What a terrible thing to happen. I never thought about being a caffeine addict. Hate to go through withdrawal. When I stopped drinking soda, i did it gradually because I knew the withdrawal would be terrible. I hope you get better....

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    1. I stopped drinking fizzy drinks and caffeine at the same time so I'm getting double the fun! I never knew that it would go like this or I would've reduced it gradually. But after ten days, it's a bit late to do that!

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  3. What the????? That's some heavy duty withdrawal symptoms for just one cup a day. I gave up coffee several years ago and never experienced any withdrawals. Now quitting smoking was a bit harder but it's been a year now. I hope you kick this soon!

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    1. When I factor in the fizzy drinks ie Pepsi, and occasional chocolate my intake was higher than I first thought, so that's kind of scary. I really hope this passes quick as some people online suffer this for months.

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  4. I am so sorry you're going through that. I used to drink about 11 cups of black tea a day and got really bad caffeine withdrawal with headaches if I drank less on a day. I didn't realize it was caffiene addiction at first. I have now dialed it back to only 4 cups of black tea on a day and it's easier to deal with as I don't feel as bad when I miss one of those cups now. Now I just drink a lot of green and white tea. I hope you feel better soon!

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    1. It's pretty horrible isn't it! Funny, the thing I'm getting least is the headache...my worst ailments are all stomach related. Fruit juice and water are helping a bit so I hope I'm at the quicker end of the scale. I don't fancy months of this!

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  5. "a riot on legs." Too funny. I feel for you though, I think I might be addicted too! I gave up caffeine a while back (trying to be health conscious) but somehow started again. I would probably have withdrawal too if I quit now.

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    1. I've had ten days of misery so far and I refuse to suffer this for nothing, so no going back! I'm staying away from anything with caffeine from now on! If I could just sleep for a month right now I'd do it!

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  6. Oh no, poor you, that sounds horrible!! More people than you might think are addicted. I work as a Barista and see the same customers every day, especially in the morning.

    I was really bad myself a while ago and had 2-3 double shot coffees a day. I drank tea for a while after that. Now I have 1 coffee a day or none at all and am fine. Lucky. It's so tempting, when you can make your own coffee.. and I really enjoy doing it as well.

    Hope you are feeling better soon!

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    1. I think a lot of your regulars might get a shock if they stopped drinking coffee! I wish I'd known about the withdrawal as I'd have been more careful about it. Oh well, no point in moaning about it, I just need to battle through...Thanks for your kind thoughts!

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  7. Good to know. Hope the recovery is faster for you.

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    1. I certainly hope so. I hate feeling so grim!

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  8. Yeah, withdrawals are awful, not matter what it is you have them from... I did OK when I quit smoking last year, but a few years ago, when I tried, I just couldn't do it :(
    And the same with coffee! The constipation is among the worst, I think, it makes me so cranky!
    I hope you'll be good after the shortest period, Chuckles.
    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. The constipation was awful but it's getting a bit better thanks to the doctor! I wish the rest of it would just vanish though! I'm as cranky as a very cranky bear right about now!

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  9. Oh, I know I'm addicted to caffeine. But I'm not interested in giving it up. I don't drink much of it, to be honest, (I buy packets of Crystal Light that you mix in water and they have caffeine, and it's less than what's in a cup of coffee) but I usually get a headache if I don't have it. But the thing is, caffeine also helps headaches. I've had prescription headache pills with caffeine, so, instead of putting even more chemicals into my body, I can sometimes get rid of really bad headaches myself with simple tylenol and caffeine. Sorry you're suffering through such miserable withdrawal symptoms though :-/ Feel better soon!

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    1. I hope I feel better soon. I'm struggling a bit right now and even worse, it's affecting my reading and I just can't have that...ach you have to laugh or you'd cry!

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  10. Oh my goodness, you will hopefully come through this quickly. I tried a couple of years ago but got killer headaches so have stayed on the black stuff!

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    1. I'm determined to get this done and drinking massive amounts of fruit juice and water is helping with a lot of the symptoms so I hope it all passes quickly!

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  11. Oh yeah, I know these :) in fact, you should never flat out quit! You should take less and every other day first and only then quit. Otherwise it's like stepping out into the cold naked :) a bit of a shock for you.
    In fact, I haven't had coffee for a few days myself! Had food poisoning, so had to stop having coffee. It's always love and hate with coffee for me.

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    1. I wish I'd known! I figured I was only taking one cup a day and didn't have to bother but add in the fizzy drinks and other foods...erk! Stepping into the cold naked is actually a pretty good comparison I think!

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  12. How horrible. Hope it doesn't last too long. I know I'm addicted to caffeine. I also don't really plan on stopping anytime soon. Sad but I guess I could have worse addictions. Caffeine, books and dogs - that's me! Sending good thoughts your way!

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    1. I'm always managing to inflict some kind of misery on myself! I think I'll embrace my book addiction now and revel in it! I think your dog addiction is pretty good fun too...!

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  13. I am sorry you are feeling so poorly :( I am totally addicted to caffeine! I get a headache if I don't get any by a certain point of the day. I would stop but I can't stand the withdrawl so I just cave in. I have cut back so that is a step.

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    1. I always seem to give myself problems I don't need huh! It hasn't been a fun time but I'll get through it eventually!

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  14. wow I think somehow I missed your post about having health issues! Sorry to hear that/ I had never heard of 'caffeine withdrawal' before! I only drink one coffee a day too! and sometimes I don't feel like it for a few days and get some of those symptoms so I wonder now! Thanks for sharing all this info! and the link.
    I hope you recover soon!

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    1. I had no idea it was so serious until I got it! I figured caffeine withdrawal was for people who drink coffee and energy drinks all day in large amounts but not for a cup a day and a can of Pepsi! It's all a bit scary. No wonder kids are hyper from taking fizzy drinks and chocolate! I dread to think what their caffeine levels are...

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  15. Wow, that is terrible! I am never quitting coffee if those are the results :) I drink two full cups in the morning, a cup of tea when I get home from work and another cup of coffee before bed, usually with dark chocolate on the side.. I'd probably die if I stopped cold turkey.

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    1. Cutting down is ok if you do it gradually. If you were cutting down go to 3.5 cups for a couple of weeks, then 3 for a couple of weeks etc while increasing your intake of water and fruit juices to offset the symptoms. But of course I never knew that and jumped right in! I think more info needs to be out there about this.

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  16. Wow, that's crazy caffeine withdrawal can do that. Hope you feel better.

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