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15 Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms you should know about

caffeine withdrawal symptoms
by Manuel Wisotzky

15 Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms you should know about


Giving up coffee? I can’t even think of that. But some people may have to because of medical reasons. And I feel sorry for them because they may have to go through a few days with caffeine withdrawal symptoms. Caffeine is a stimulant that helps you stay awake, alert, and happy. If a regular coffee drinker suddenly stops, he may experience dreaded withdrawal symptoms.

An estimated 85% of the US population has caffeine at least once a day, and many regular coffee drinkers are more or less dependent on coffee. Caffeine is one of the most popular and socially accepted psychoactive substances and can potentially become somewhat addictive. Coffee addictiveness is in no way comparable to the destructive addictiveness of drugs. But quitting the coffee-drinking habit suddenly may cause coffee withdrawal symptoms. It can cause headaches, anxiety, and depression. All of these symptoms are very common during the first few days after quitting coffee.

In this article, I will go over the most prevalent caffeine withdrawal symptoms.


What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a stimulant that occurs naturally in tea, coffee, and cacao.

Caffeine helps you be more alert and prevents tiredness by boosting the central nervous system and brain. The habit of tea drinking goes back to at least 2,700 BC. The success story of coffee began, according to legend, around 850 CE when an Ethiopian shepherd observed that his goats had more energy after nibbling on the beans. The history of cacao also goes back about 4,000 years in Central America. The first energy drinks containing caffeine were created in the late 1800s, and they were originally marketed as “stimulants.”

Caffeinated beverages are consumed by 80% of the world’s population on a daily basis, with 90% of people in North America ingesting them in one form or another.



What is caffeine withdrawal?

Caffeine can change the levels of neurotransmitters like adenosine and dopamine. These neurotransmitters can have an impact on alertness, concentration, and mood.

Caffeine users who consume it regularly may develop a tolerance to it. Caffeine may even cause some people to develop a minor physical or behavioral dependence on it.

Those who stop drinking caffeine after a long period may experience unpleasant side effects such as headaches and irritability. Caffeine withdrawal syndrome is what doctors call it. Headache, fatigue, drowsiness, irritability, nausea/vomiting, and depression/anxiety are some of the symptoms. Following the initial caffeine withdrawal headaches (which can last up to four days), some people may experience a caffeine rebound headache.



What are the symptoms of caffeine withdrawal?

There are a number of symptoms that can occur when you suddenly break the habit. These might include:


1. Headache:

Headaches are one of the most frequent coffee withdrawal symptoms.

Caffeine causes blood vessels to constrict, which reduces brain blood flow. In one study, cerebral blood flow was reduced by 27% in some people when they consumed only 250 milligrams (less than three cups of coffee) of caffeine. When you stop or decrease your caffeine consumption, the blood vessels in your brain will dilate, which can cause a headache. Changes in blood flow can induce severe withdrawal headaches that vary in length and intensity as your brain adjusts to the new boost in circulation.

Although caffeine withdrawal can trigger headaches, it is used to treat different sorts of headaches, such as migraines. When consumed alone, caffeine helps to improve the effectiveness of pain-relieving drugs and minimize headache discomfort.

The first headache occurs 12 to 24 hours after coffee consumption and can last for two to three days. Although it may be severe, the headache typically disappears in about one week. Symptoms can range from mild headaches that are barely noticeable to severely painful ones that interfere with daily activities for days on end. 



2. Irritability:

The coffee drinker may become irritable, restless, and anxious. It is because caffeine helps increase dopamine activity in your brain. When you stop drinking coffee, dopamine levels drop rapidly, leading to mood swings and anxiety disorders.



3. Depression:

Another coffee withdrawal symptom is depression. Coffee drinkers become physically dependent on coffee and may experience intense cravings when they abruptly stop drinking coffee. The brain has to adjust to caffeine’s absence, which can cause emotional changes like depression in some people.

Irritation due to a subdural hematoma is generally only brief, with symptoms typically lasting no more than a few days or weeks. Some coffee drinkers experience depression when they stop drinking coffee due to caffeine withdrawal symptoms. Symptoms usually begin within 12 to 24 hours after stopping coffee intake and peak two or three days later but can last up to long periods for some people (up to six weeks).



4. Fatigue:

Caffeine has a notable effect on your nervous system and can keep you from feeling tired. When coffee drinkers stop drinking coffee, they may become fatigued initially because of the drop in caffeine levels.

It usually makes people feel like taking a nap, which most coffee drinkers do not normally do. The fatigue should gradually disappear within a few days.



5. Nausea and vomiting:

Coffee drinkers may become nauseous when they stop drinking coffee due to the caffeine withdrawal symptoms. Symptoms of nausea usually start within 12 to 24 hours after stopping coffee intake and peak two or three days later but can last up to long periods for some people (up to six weeks).

6. Difficulty Concentrating:

The coffee drinker may experience difficulty concentrating when they stop drinking coffee. This symptom is linked to a drop in caffeine levels and usually only lasts a few days or weeks, but it can be very severe for some people.



7. Insomnia:

Even though caffeine withdrawal is a difficult process, most people cannot sleep when they are in this state. The symptoms appear 12-24 hours after you stop drinking coffee and peak two or three days later, with some experiencing them longer than others.



8. Tremors:

Tremors are another coffee withdrawal symptom that may occur. It is associated with a drop in caffeine levels and usually only lasts a few days or weeks at most but can be very severe for some people.

Tremors can occur in people who have a serious caffeine addiction, though they are less common than other withdrawal symptoms.

Because caffeine is a potent stimulant, drinking too much might make you feel jittery or nervous, and your hands may shake. Its consumption is often discouraged for people with anxiety disorders to avoid exacerbating their symptoms.



9. Sleepiness:

Caffeine withdrawal symptoms cause some coffee drinkers to feel sleepy or tired when they stop drinking coffee. It isn’t your typical tiredness; this is tiredness from sitting up straight but still unable to keep your eyes open.



10. Muscle Pain, Stiffness, and Cramping:

Coffee drinkers may experience muscle pain, stiffness, and cramping when they stop drinking coffee. These symptoms are linked to the drop in caffeine levels and usually only last a few days or weeks at most but can be very severe for some people.



11. Nervousness:

Coffee drinkers experience a range of emotions when they stop drinking coffee, typically because the caffeine is so powerful. Symptoms usually begin within 12 to 24 hours after stopping your intake and peak two or three days later for some people – though longer-term use can cause more severe effects that last up until six weeks post-cessation!



 12. Dizziness:

Dizziness is a coffee withdrawal symptom that may occur. It is associated with a drop in caffeine levels and usually only lasts a few days or weeks at most but can be very severe for some people.



13. Low Energy:

Most caffeine drinkers and eaters are looking for a way to boost their energy levels. Many people turn to external sources of energy, such as coffee and energy drinks, to recharge after losing energy from poor sleep, stressful occupations, and bad diets.

Caffeinated drinks are frequently used as a crutch to provide the energy required to get through the day or make up for lack of sleep. Drinking a coffee or an energy bar increases concentration, heart rate, and blood sugar, resulting in feelings of enhanced physical and mental energy.

These preferred effects are due to caffeine addiction, requiring increasing amounts of caffeine to achieve the same energy boost. People who quit or reduce their caffeine intake frequently complain about low energy.



14.  Anxiety:

Caffeine is a stimulant that raises blood pressure, heart rate, and stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Caffeine sensitivity can make people feel agitated and uneasy after drinking just one cup of coffee. Caffeine consumption can cause anxiety, but cutting it out can also result in this side effect. Anxiety is a common symptom in people who stop drinking caffeine regularly.

It can cause anxiety because the body becomes mentally and physiologically reliant on it. Furthermore, if you get a large percentage of your caffeine from soda or sweetened coffee, the significant drop in sugar may exacerbate caffeine withdrawal anxiety.



15. Brain Fog

Several people are experiencing brain fog due to withdrawal, which is defined as the inability to have coherent thoughts, think clearly, and perform common tasks.




If you really have to think about quitting coffee, it’s important to be aware that you may be in for some coffee withdrawal symptoms. These can range from headaches and anxiety to depression and difficulty concentrating on tasks at hand. The signs of caffeine withdrawal show up 12 to 24 hours after the last coffee intake. However, symptoms typically last only 3-5 days after quitting coffee, and they will eventually subside as your body adjusts. It is a lot shorter than other addiction withdrawals, so don’t let these side effects scare you! Withdrawing from coffee doesn’t have to be hard– just proceed slowly by gradually reducing your coffee intake. By going slow instead of going cold turkey, you will not need to feel terrible or experience any severe caffeine withdrawal symptoms.

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