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I have been getting into the habit of trying to remain productive when depressed by continually consuming caffeine. It seems to enable me to keep working, in a mindless sort of way. Mostly tea, so I don't think I'm having a ridiculous amount. Probably about 600-800mg a day. What concerns me a little is that when my brain is functioning at full capacity I can't tolerate caffeine at all because it exacerbates my anxiety.

 

I'm well aware it's not at all satisfactory as a long term antidepressant but do caffeine and depression mix, or am I making things worse?

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It's probably giving you a bit of mood fluctuation, like with a sugar rush. I find caffeine really soothing and sometimes I drink it before bed, but I'm weird. If its making your anxiety worse i think you should try and cut down. I'm sorry you feel bad, have you ever bought up your caffeine usage?

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I've been curious about caffeine also.  It seems to affect me in different ways, and I never know which way it will affect me on any given day.

 

I'm either:

- happy, smiling, full of energy, become more extroverted, and feeling positive

- or anxious, jittery and just generally "uncomfortable"

 

While I always hope for the former, I at times will end up with the latter instead.  It's a crap shoot.

 

I mentioned it to my pdoc once and he didn't say anything about it, yay or nay.

 

I'm curious to see how others feel about this also....

Edited by GrayEyes777
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I find that it actually depends how I feel when I drink the caffeine, if I was already anxious it will make it worse but if I'm not then I'll get happy for a bit until I crash worse than I was before at which point I'll have to drink more caffeine to keep the feeling going or deal with the consequences.

 

I think in the end caffeine doesn't really make or break anything. It won't make you worse in the long term but there's a crash at the end of the high like with any mood altering drug (which I believe it is) that you'll eventually have to deal with.

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It's probably giving you a bit of mood fluctuation, like with a sugar rush. I find caffeine really soothing and sometimes I drink it before bed, but I'm weird. If its making your anxiety worse i think you should try and cut down. I'm sorry you feel bad, have you ever bought up your caffeine usage?

I'm exactly like you. I am sitting here drinking a red bull because I am going to bed in half an hour.

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Wow, if I have caffeine after lunchtime, I can't sleep, so I strictly limit it to mornings. That said, I do use it as a mood elevator. Things look better with caffeine. Because I don't take it in the afternoon and I run down as the day wears on, I go to bed very early to avoid the evenings, as that is when I am most depressed.  Caffeine gets a big thumb-up from me.

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I find that it actually depends how I feel when I drink the caffeine, if I was already anxious it will make it worse but if I'm not then I'll get happy for a bit until I crash worse than I was before at which point I'll have to drink more caffeine to keep the feeling going or deal with the consequences.

 

I find this too. It won't trigger anxiety if I don't have any in the first place but it can make existing anxiety much worse. I tend to drink decaff most of the time but switch to disgustingly strong regular tea when depressed.

 

It's probably giving you a bit of mood fluctuation, like with a sugar rush. I find caffeine really soothing and sometimes I drink it before bed, but I'm weird. If its making your anxiety worse i think you should try and cut down. I'm sorry you feel bad, have you ever bought up your caffeine usage?

I've never really thought to. I don't tend to get anxiety and depression at the same time though, it's usually one or the other so I can regulate my teabags accordingly.

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Caffiene is a dangerous drug to abuse. I have been addicted on 7 cups a day in the past in order to study for finals. I ODd once and had rapid heartrate, panic attack and numbness in my face, finger and toes for 2 hours. After exams I quit cold-turkey. Huge mistake. I felt like I was a zombie or on a heavy dose of sedatives. I couldn't think or hold a conversation and I spent hours staring at walls. Watching tv was hopless because i kept blanking out and missing segments.

Now I know caffiene improves my low days but I am careful to not build a tolerance again. I limit myself to one cup if i wake up at a decent hour and usually the kick is enough to keep my day going. It also really helps now that my doctor prescibed me something for sleep.

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I love caffiene. I can drink it any time of day, and go to sleep after a cup of coffee.  (I won't do this because of my acid reflux, but I could.)  I find coffee and other sources of caffiene to be soothing and slightly mood-elevating. 

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Caffeine gives me a small-to-moderate mood and energy boost.  It is not a miracle treatment for depression, but it does help me get tasks done when I am depressed.  I have been a hardcore caffeine junkie in the past, but I have cut back a bit, since it can hinder vitamin absorption. 

 

If you enjoy a cup o' joe in the morning or find green tea soothing, then go for it.  I do think the adage "everything in moderation" applies.

 

As a barista, I might be a little biased, though.  ;)

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I did some research expecting to find that caffeine would have a relationship with MI because I've seen so many people with depression relying on it, and it made sense to me that it could disrupt sleep which could worsen depression. 

But there's actually studies that have found conflicting results, and one longitudinal study found those who drank more than 550mg of caffiene a day had lower risk than those who drank smaller amounts. There coud have been a bit of a confounding effect because people who are anxious are probably more vulnerable to unpleasant effects of caffeine, so reduce their use, and anxiety is linked to depression. 

 

Here's the link to the study - it's not behind a paywall which is nice. 

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Before I was on medication I found that caffeine had a tendancy to magnify how I was already feeling, so if it was a particularly bad day coffee just made it worse, while if I was having a good day it made me feel even better. Post-meds I don't notice much of a change when it comes to mood. Mostly, I find it helps me work, since I'm currently not taking anything for my ADHD-PI and my job is pretty much exclusively about attention to detail. As a result, I am trying as hard as possible to limit my consumption to days I work so as to not build up too much of a tolerance.

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I did some research expecting to find that caffeine would have a relationship with MI because I've seen so many people with depression relying on it, and it made sense to me that it could disrupt sleep which could worsen depression. 

But there's actually studies that have found conflicting results, and one longitudinal study found those who drank more than 550mg of caffiene a day had lower risk than those who drank smaller amounts. There coud have been a bit of a confounding effect because people who are anxious are probably more vulnerable to unpleasant effects of caffeine, so reduce their use, and anxiety is linked to depression. 

 

Here's the link to the study - it's not behind a paywall which is nice. 

That is interesting. I might have expected the opposite distortion, depressed people self-medicating with caffeine. It would be good to see a controlled experiment though.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have to have my caffeine in the morning.  I too, however find that if I am already anxious it will have me jumping out of my skin after only a few cups.  I can't drink coffee after 5 at night or I will sleep worse then I already do.  

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I remember reading somewhere a million years ago that cross-addiction to caffeine and nicotine is very common among the MI, it doesn't cause it, of course. I know I had a cross-addiction for many years. As I said, I still use caffeine, but I quit smoking 12 years ago (like next week).

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I did some research expecting to find that caffeine would have a relationship with MI because I've seen so many people with depression relying on it, and it made sense to me that it could disrupt sleep which could worsen depression. 

But there's actually studies that have found conflicting results, and one longitudinal study found those who drank more than 550mg of caffiene a day had lower risk than those who drank smaller amounts. There coud have been a bit of a confounding effect because people who are anxious are probably more vulnerable to unpleasant effects of caffeine, so reduce their use, and anxiety is linked to depression. 

 

Here's the link to the study - it's not behind a paywall which is nice. 

 

This was interesting reading, thanks for the link.

 

 

 

I remember reading somewhere a million years ago that cross-addiction to caffeine and nicotine is very common among the MI, it doesn't cause it, of course. I know I had a cross-addiction for many years. As I said, I still use caffeine, but I quit smoking 12 years ago (like next week).

 

I've heard this before, too. I'm guilty of both caffeine and nicotine addiction. For me, coffee is almost stabilizing. The first two cups help me wake up and clear my head. I don't notice any greater effect after those first two, even though I drink it off and on all day. It just keeps me at "cruising altitude." That's probably tolerance talking though.

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