Most people know that caffeine is not good for your health but evidence suggests that it can even worsen symptoms of anxiety. People rely on coffee as a stimulant to keep them awake and focused but along with those affects come jitteriness, tension, increased heart rate and other symptoms. These physical effects very closely resemble some of the symptoms associated with anxiety.
Even for people who develop a tolerance to caffeine, the drug will always contribute to anxiety symptoms as a person is never completely tolerant to its effects. Higher doses above 250 milligrams are more likely to trigger anxiety and other side effects such as insomnia and cardiac arrhythmia. People with existing issues with anxiety tend to be more sensitive to the effects of caffeine.
For someone suffering from anxiety who is particularly vulnerable to the effects of caffeine it may be helpful for them to quit or at least cut down on their intake. Gradually cutting back by switching to tea or decaf can be a good way to reduce the overall amount of caffeine that you drink. Being aware of the caffeine content of certain drinks and keeping your intake below 250 milligrams can be a helpful start.
Quitting caffeine completely can be especially beneficial for anxiety but you are likely to go through some withdrawal symptoms if you are a regular coffee drinker. Things like headaches, fatigue, difficulty concentrating and even depression can result from caffeine withdrawal. Cutting back slowly can help you avoid withdrawal and you will start to see some of your anxiety symptoms reduced over time.
It can be helpful to make sure you get at least eight hours of sleep every night and try to boost energy naturally by eating healthy foods and exercising regularly. Staying healthy can reduce your need for caffeine and make it easier to quit completely.
Tags: anxiety, anxiety treatment, stimulant abuse, types of anxiety