Could your breakfast coffee be more than just a morning pick-me-up? Some doctors think so. Caffeine dependence is considered a mild form of addiction. Although the withdrawal symptoms are relatively minor compared to other substances (headache, tiredness, and the inability to focus), breaking the caffeine cycle may be difficult, Dr. William Hay said.
For many, caffeine addiction can cause a problem, but for others caffeine just helps them get through the day.
“It’s safe enough and cheap enough that people just keep drinking it,” Hay said.
Unlike other addictions, hospitalization is not necessary for most people addicted to caffeine and many hospitals will not treat for it. For anyone concerned about a possible caffeine dependence Hay suggests slowly cutting back. This will help reduce the symptoms associated with caffeine withdrawal, he said. If you drink coffee, soda or other caffeinated beverages regularly, try to slowly reduce the number of caffeinated drinks you have per day. This will help you kick the caffeine habit.
So when you sip that coffee, chug that energy drink or slurp that soda, remember, it could be more than just an energy boost. You could actually be addicted.
De café, anyone?