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Caffeine-induced Hypomania


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Even though I take quite a high dose of Concerta, my tolerance for the much less potent stimulant caffeine is sooo low. I had two cups of coffee today and I swear I felt more than the effects of the caffeine. What I felt was hypomania, a state I'm very acquainted with. I had two and a half cup of coffee and I was on top of the world. I was thinking I would become real manic for a while, but I never went into psychotic territory which I do in real manias. Starting to come down now and desperatly trying to keep my pleasant state of mind by drinking more coffee.. Yeah I know, it could lead to more severe mania, but I wanna stay here in this beautiful world!

Have you had caffeine-induced hypomanias? I know I probably should avoid coffee altogether, but it's hard because I used to drink coffee everyday.

Or is it possible that it's not the caffeine causing the mania, but rather I'm on a too low dose of Lithium?

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That's what I don't know! How can we know if the caffeine triggers a hypomania or if the hypomania is actually a normal reaction to caffeine?

But I'm guessing us bipolars should avoid caffeine... At least I know I should!

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I couldn't say about mania, but I do know that caffeine exacerbates my anxiety symptoms ALOT. But either way... If you decide that you need to cut the caffeine, you can try what I did. I started by reducing the regular coffee amount in my coffee maker by a quarter, and replaced it with decaf. I drank it like that for a couple weeks and then reduced it again so it was half and half. Couple more weeks and I reduced it again. I couldn't bring myself to reduce it any more than that, but I figure that 75% decaf isn't doing too bad.

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Thanks SerraGeorge, but I'm not really a coffee junkie. Used to be though. Switching to decaf sounds like a good idea, so I don't have to miss out on the taste.

I also attribute some of my mania to L-Tyrosine, which has mania listed as a known side effect. Stupid me, I usually do my research.

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FWIW, I'm BP and I, uhm, use cafeine pills often to get me through finals, papers etc when I have the horrible sleepiness and fatigue that comes along with depression. It will make me hyper a bit and very irritable, but at the end of the day I'm still depressed. So I would say that no, caffeine makes everyone including NTs and non-NTs a bit hyper but does not induce mania according to my experience.

If it did, it would probably have been noticed and we would be warned about it, considering how common caffeine use is.

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As with all things, I think caffeine affects different people differently. I for one did get hypo on caffeine. It was my secret recreational drug. No one knew I was gettin' happy. But I had to be careful. Sometimes, as little as two sips sent me into racing mixed states. But other times I would get a euphoric mushroom-y, semi-hallucinatory state.

It's personal trial and error to some degree. If it doesn't suit your system, don't do it. Some of us can drink alcohol, coffee, or cough med. Some of us can't. For example, my pdoc told me to avoid caffeine.

7

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FWIW, I'm BP and I, uhm, use cafeine pills often to get me through finals, papers etc when I have the horrible sleepiness and fatigue that comes along with depression.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

LOL. My trick was chocolate-covered espresso beans. Kept a small bag with me, especially during night classes. That way, I didn't have to depend on when the next break was...could just nosh on some beans. Mmmm. :)

Not that this has much to do with anything here (threadjack?), but whenever I am sick, I have no desire for coffee -- the idea sounds awful. My desire for it simply leaves, and when I think I might want a cup again I know I'm starting to get well.

However, since starting Lamictal I haven't wanted to have coffee. Been drinking tea. Go figure. ;)

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I once had a cup of decaf because they were out of reg.  Then they got more reg. coffee and I had a full mania because of it.  I was in a room of about 400 people.  I thought about 250 were aliens.  I was awake for the next 8 days halucinating.

I drink decaf now.

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Ack!  I hate it when everyone turns to aliens.  I have so much trouble understanding the language. ;)

Caffeine exacerbates any anxiety or other hypo symptoms I might have.  Maybe it's bringing out some hypomania that doesn't really bother you enough to notice it?

Coffee is the worst for me.  When I need a stimulant, I follow my one strong cup in the morning with green tea.  Tea in general has less weird stimulating chemicals in it than coffee and is less activating for me despite the increased caffeine.  But green tea generally has less caffeine than black tea and has loads of antioxidants that can genuinely make you feel more healthy.

I've taken breaks from coffee several times in the last year without suffering withdrawal symptoms by switching to green tea a few times a day.  I highly recommend it.

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Decaf still has small amounts of caffeine. see this chart for Caffeine content

of course it's much less. but if i have a decaf late enough, it will keep me awake. also remember other drinks that have caffeine.

lithium sheets told me, no large amounts of caffeine.. and at first i forgot how iced tea had caffeine in it, duh.. can we say tremors? uh, can say it, but can't type it, i'm shaking too much.

i love coffee so much.. sigh.. but yes. before lith i had consumed on occasion, enough caffeine to be flyin' high, obnoxiously loud, and having wildly fantastic ideas that went too fast.

these days i limit myself to two instants. i then switch to herbal tea and water.

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I would have my hypomania exacerbated with caffeine while unmedicated but now that I'm on meds I can drink it without any problems.  Actually, I kind of find it helpful at work with motivation and focusing issues but on the weekends I don't bother. 

I'm a tea drinker but if I'm in rough shape and I really need a jolt I'll go straight for a coffee but that's a rarity these days.  It just seems to hit me faster.  Maybe the beans tweak the receptors differently than the leaves.

Karen

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Heya,

I love my Coke Zero but I know I need to stop.

Even 1-2 cans a day -- it takes 4 to make a cup of coffeee -- brings back the nightmares Lamictal got rid of so handily.

It's no hell on the anxiety either.

--ncc--

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I have a weird reaction to coffee.  If I drink it every day it will start making me tired.  If I have it once in a while it may make me pretty dang hypomanic.  I try to use it sparingly, if I haven't slept or really need energy.  Exercise works better in the long term, but my butt likes the couch too much lately

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