Bipolar Disorder and Caffeine – How They are Related?

By on September 10, 2013

Bipolar Disorder and CaffeineBipolar Disorder and Caffeine are very much linked to each other. Intake of caffeine can alleviate the symptoms of Bipolar disorder.

Actually, Bipolar disorder is a mood disorder caused by chemical imbalance in the brain that can result in extreme swings in mood from manic highs to depressive lows.

Bipolar disorder afflicts about 4 million people in the United States and is the fifth leading cause of disability worldwide.

Doctors prescribe medications that help to ease the symptoms of bipolar disorder, but new research reveals that there is a link between diet and bipolar disorder, having sugar, caffeine and a poor diet may have a negative effect and increase the mood swings of the sufferers.

Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world and consumed by 80% of people around the world. Also it is the most commonly used psychoactive substance.

Caffeine is considered to be a drug, and it may cause caffeine addiction. Caffeine is a known factor in many disorders such as bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, depression, ulcers, asthma, hypertension, heart disease, hepatitis, migraines, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and many others.

Caffeine seems to affect men and women differently. Caffeine works by stimulating the central nervous system. It may aggravate the symptoms of existing bipolar disorders and can trigger panic attacks.

Link between bipolar disorder and caffeine:

People with bipolar disorder and caffeine consumption may have disturbed sleep cycle, thus contributing to attacks of mania and hypomania. So, avoid consuming too much caffeine, which is particularly important for people with bipolar disorder.

Also, excessive caffeine intake decreases the sedative effects of certain medications like benzodiazepines used in treating anxiety and mania linked with bipolar disorder.

Bipolar people who consumed coffee are 2.42 times more likely to attempt suicide compared to the people who did not drink coffee.

Caffeine has a great impact on an individual’s behavior and mental state which in turn cause negative moods, anxiety, violence, anger, depression, frustration and excess worry.

It can also reduce the effectiveness of your bipolar disorder prescription drugs. If you are suffering from bipolar disorder, caffeine will make you feel worse.

This bipolar disorder and caffeine consumption cannot be cured but can be stabilized with psychotherapy, medication and lifestyle changes in order to live productive lives.

It is important to avoid caffeine contained drinks like coffee, tea, colas and soda because caffeine can trigger manic and hypomanic moods. The recommended daily consumption of caffeine is 250 mg or less that help to prevent disturbance with sleep.

Maintaining a healthy sleep pattern is an important way to mange bipolar episodes. If your caffeine intake is above 250 mg, try to cut back.Caffeine consumed in limited quantities is proven to reduce the risk of colon cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.

Withdrawal symptoms possibly including fatigue, irritability, headache, poor concentration, insomnia, pain in the joints and drowsiness, may appear within 12 to 24 hours after discontinuation of caffeine intake.

These withdrawal symptoms may last from one to five days. Approximately, 50% of people may experience caffeine withdrawal symptoms when they cut caffeine consumption.

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