People talk about their coffee addictions every day in America. Many say that they need coffee in order to fully feel awake in the morning or that they get a headache if they don’t get their cup of Joe on time each day. Caffeine is considered a relatively benign substance in American culture and therefore dependence on it is considered somewhat normal for most people. But just because society doesn’t question it, does that mean that coffee is completely safe?
Dave Grohl and Caffeine Addiction
Coffee is one drug that will have few negative long-term consequences as long as it is ingested in moderation. Nevertheless, those who live with addictive tendencies can overdo anything. In fact, rocker Dave Grohl – he rose to fame playing in the grunge band Nirvana with Kurt Cobain who famously died from an overdose on much stronger drugs – says that coffee put him in the hospital. In the rock-n-roll world, especially with Cobain as a comparison, a caffeine addiction seems almost laughable. However, if it can cause deadly side effects when ingested in large enough quantities, the result could be the same as those experienced by those who abuse much more hardcore substances.
Too Much Coffee Can Lead to Heart Attack
Although Grohl made fun of himself in a parody of the situation in 2010, the consequences of his caffeine habit were no laughing matter. The singer explained to the press that he was in the studio recording a record and drinking excessive amounts of coffee throughout the process. He started to experience chest pains that were intense enough that he went to the hospital to get checked out. Grohl was told by doctors that the chest pains were due to his coffee intake. Though he had never viewed a cup of coffee as a potentially lethal substance, he found out in no uncertain terms that day that coffee is a drug and needs to be respected as such.
Grohl is not alone. There are people who must go to rehab in order to curb their coffee addiction. People may suffer some of the following consequences from the overuse of coffee:
- Adrenal fatigue
- Chest pains
- Heart attack
- Panic attacks
- Racing heart
Signs and Symptoms of a Coffee Addiction
The concept of coffee addiction may seem silly but if you look at the effect that caffeine has on the body, most people will see the similarities between the effects of this socially acceptable drug and other addictive substances. No one argues that coffee creates dependency, which is the first step to an addiction. This is followed by tolerance where you need more to attain the same effect. Additionally, for regular coffee drinkers, 12 to 24 hours without coffee will start to produce withdrawals symptoms, which usually start with a headache. Other symptoms of caffeine withdrawal, which usually last for about two days, include:
- Extreme fatigue
- Problems with concentration
- Depressed mood
- Muscular pain
- Difficulty with cognitive tasks
Do you think addiction is too strong a word for the effects caffeine has on the body? Tell us your opinion below.