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of Interest:

Addiction Recovery - The Key to Abstinence   

Get the Support You Need After Quitting an Addiction   

How to Overcome Drug Addiction with Help From Self Hypnosis  

How to Overcome Addiction to Pornography  

Caffeine Addiction and the Brain: Both Sides of the Coin   

Teenagers and Addiction: How do you understand the anxiety that leads to addiction?   

Advice on How to Quit Marijuana   

Is Everyone Addicted?   

Is Everyone Addicted? Page #2   

Addiction Help for The Struggling Addict  

Addiction to Painkillers? These Tips Can Help  

Signs of Gambling Addiction

 Truly in Love or Addicted to Love?  

The Four Stages of Addiction

 

Alcohol Abuse

 

Articles of Interest:

Alcohol Abuse

Alcohol Treatment

Alcohol Use and Abuse: An Introduction

Alcohol Dependence, Abuse and Intoxication

Alcohol Withdrawal

Addiction and Abuse Related Disorders

Alcohol Related Psychotic and Mood Disorders

Alcohol Induced Anxiety, Sleep & Sexual Disorders

Website Map/All Articles 

 

Caffeine Addiction and the Brain: Both Sides of the Coin

Author: Timothy Aaron Whiston

caffeine addictionCaffeine addiction can cause physical damage to the brain. At the same time, addiction can be the result of abnormal brain function. It’s important to understand both how too much caffeine can harm your brain and how your brain anatomy can be the cause of your addiction.

According to leading researchers, including Daniel G. Amen – one of the world’s top brain scientists – too much caffeine restricts the flow of blood into the brain. Decreased blood flow will not only result in reduced performance, but can cause permanent damage.

While small amounts of caffeine may actually stimulate concentration and alertness, the average caffeine addict consumes 5 or more cups per day. This excessive intake of caffeine can produce a variety of harmful effects, including panic disorder.

It’s clear that drinking too much caffeine can be bad for your brain. Add this to the list of reasons to quit.

But the other side of this discussion is the fact that abnormal brain anatomy and chemistry could actually be the cause of your addiction. New information from numerous studies indicates that people who are addicted to chemicals are in fact suffering from a physical illness.

Addicted brains actually function in a way that is dramatically different from the way normal brains operate. Multiple studies have shown that an addict’s brain may be physically unable to respond to stimuli or send/receive signals that would allow the addict to alter his or her behavior.

This might sound like an excuse but it’s not. People can conquer their addictions with the right kind of support and treatment, but understanding how an addicted brain functions, or fails to function as the case may be, is essential for many reasons.

 

First, knowing that your brain chemistry and physiology might be abnormal means you can let go of the guilt you might be dealing with. There is likely a very real reason for your seemingly absurd inability to just refrain from going overboard on your daily intake.

Second, understanding your problem may stem from a physical brain condition will help you accept the fact that you need help from others in order to quit. This is critical because statistically speaking, very few addicts ever break free from their vice without substantial support from other people.

Opinions vary in the medical community as to whether or not the abnormal patterns seen in an addicted brain were present prior to excessive chemical use. Some physicians believe this off-center chemistry could have been present all along, and was never a practical issue before the individual began excessive chemical use. Others insist that chemical abuse actually caused the brain to develop abnormal function. I’m not sure it really matters at this point to be honest.

The fact is if you find yourself on the verge of tears every night, swearing you’ll reduce your caffeine intake tomorrow, only to drink far too much again the next day, you most likely have a physical problem. Couple this with the very real damage continued abuse may be doing to your brain, and you have every reason to seek real help with your problem.

Find a doctor you can talk to candidly about your caffeine addiction. And look for a support group that gives you the opportunity to talk with other people who are struggling with the same issues.

Your chances of success improve considerably when you take the issue seriously enough to ask for help. And once you are plugged into a real support group and/or working with a doctor who understands your needs, you will be well on your way to breaking free from your caffeine addiction.

Also, See:   Teenagers and Addiction: How do you understand the anxiety that leads to addiction?  

Webpage by Paul Susic Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist  

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