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Caffeine Withdrawal
Old 07-16-2007, 01:48 PM   #1
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Caffeine Withdrawal

For those of you with a bean on your back: Hope you all are practicing (or planning to practice) "safe retirement." Some of you wrote that you no longer use an alarm clock. Iíd be curious to know how you deal with (or plan to deal with) caffeine withdrawal caused by sleeping in.

Apparently this menace can be more than just a headache, it can manifest as flu-like symptoms and even depression. I would appreciate your input as Iíve come to believe it will be futile to attempt to coerce SO into bringing the first cup. At the moment this is major stumbling block to ER. Help!
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Old 07-16-2007, 02:06 PM   #2
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I will never give up my coffee. Never, I tell you.

Sunday morning migraine - often a symptom of unrecognized caffeine withdrawal (used to having it by 7:30 all week, now it's 10:30 Sunday morning and boom - withdrawal headache). Oversleeping can trigger real migraines, too.

Anacin/Excedrin helps your headache but aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen don't: think caffeine withdrawal - the first two contain the stuff. Sometimes they are the very cause of the headache wich may have started out as a simple tension headache.

Caffeine as a diuretic: true, but not enough to neutralize the fluid volume found in standard coffee. Drink 12 oz of coffee and you'll pee more than usual, but not anywhere near 12 oz worth so you can hydrate with coffee, though it would be hard and they'd have to peel you off the ceiling.
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Old 07-16-2007, 06:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CuppaJoe View Post
For those of you with a bean on your back: Hope you all are practicing (or planning to practice) "safe retirement." Some of you wrote that you no longer use an alarm clock. Iíd be curious to know how you deal with (or plan to deal with) caffeine withdrawal caused by sleeping in.

Apparently this menace can be more than just a headache, it can manifest as flu-like symptoms and even depression. I would appreciate your input as Iíve come to believe it will be futile to attempt to coerce SO into bringing the first cup. At the moment this is major stumbling block to ER. Help!
You could taper off: Get up 5 or 10 minutes later every day or 2.
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Old 07-16-2007, 06:39 PM   #4
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Old 07-16-2007, 08:27 PM   #5
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I switched to de-cafe a long time ago. I used to have 2-3 cups in the morning, tea at lunch and another cup of coffee in the afternoon. Throw in a coke along the way. My heart began to race away or flutter so that is when I decided to pull the plug. Boy, had the biggest headache for about 3 days.

On an unrelated matter, last night I must have overdosed on Benadryl. I took a pill about 11:00pm and it didn't do the trick so I took another one at 12:30. Thirty minutes later I thought I was about to have a heart attack. Couldn't breathe very well, almost threw up, and felt like my head was about to explode. Didn't get to sleep until 3:30am. Woke up with a hangover type headache. Moral to the story, follow the directions on the pill box.
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Old 07-16-2007, 09:38 PM   #6
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I started guzzling drinking coffee when I was 19 or 20. Usually at least 10-12 cups a day...well, actually mostly at night. Drank that much or more up until a few years ago when some friends accused me of being addicted and unable to quit. I finished off that cup, and didn't drink anything caffeinated for about 6 months. No withdrawals, no headaches, nothing. After about 6 months I picked up where I left off.

These days I drink coffee whenever I feel like it, and as much as I feel like. Sometimes I go for months without any, other times a pot or 2 a day. Also, love my iced tea!!! I drink very little soda, and mostly not caffeinated.

But anyway you cut it, I've never had any aches, pains, illnesses, or anything like that from caffeine use or non-use.
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Old 07-16-2007, 11:30 PM   #7
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The only time I gave up coffee was in preparation for getting pregnant. I'm not a big coffee drinker, just a cup in the morning, but I remember the headache. I found I could give up the coffee easy enough, it was the creamer that I missed. To me the coffee was just a creamer delivery system.
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Old 07-17-2007, 01:45 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CuppaJoe View Post
For those of you with a bean on your back: Hope you all are practicing (or planning to practice) "safe retirement." Some of you wrote that you no longer use an alarm clock. I’d be curious to know how you deal with (or plan to deal with) caffeine withdrawal caused by sleeping in.
I'm lucky like Goonie (knock on wood!!), no caffeine withdrawal issues here.

So I tried searching for "caffeine patch" in Google. Seems like a neat idea -- Just roll over, slap one on, go back to sleep, then get up a couple hours later and have your second patch cup.

Alas, the only results I found were some university studies (Carnegie Mellon!) and a funny YouTube video extolling the virtues of such a patch


Good luch in your search for a solution!
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Old 07-17-2007, 04:14 AM   #9
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DW is trimming back right now. She is drinking Lite coffee. it has 50% of the normal caffeine level. Next stop decaf .

IMHO - Decaf just doesn't have the same taste... weaker!
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Old 07-17-2007, 09:47 AM   #10
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We use decaf drip (Melitta) and I have 5 cups no problem.

Used to do 10 hitest and had the w/d symptoms. I found eating a pear right away helped more than taking a pill.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:33 AM   #11
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wow, there are some serious drinkers here...

i think the tapering idea should work for you cuppa joe - just push back the time you have your drink - by 15/30 minutes a day till it's where you want it...

i have 1 big mug (about 2 technical cups) in the morning, has to be before 930am or else i feel the headache coming on - past that and i'm doomed, even if i gulp down the cup.

i still had one cup per day w/ the 2nd pregnancy - only way i got thru it IMHO and little DD is just fine the "too much caffeine" studies were for much more than one cup per day.
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Old 07-17-2007, 03:52 PM   #12
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i gave up caffeine (both coffee & soda) between giving up cigarettes (both kinds) and meat. of those caffeine was the hardest habit to break. still do love coffee though. just recently i started having a cup every month or three.
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Old 07-19-2007, 05:47 PM   #13
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Thanks everyone for your info and ideas; posting here counts as volunteer work, helping others. I'm leaning toward just making the first cup whenever nature calls and putting it at bedside, may have to drink it cold but it would avoid withdrawal. Here's a little known upside to caffeine addition: when I was hospitalized, a nurse noticed I had a headache and offered something which I turned down because only Extra Strength Execedrin works. She couldn't give me Execedrin because it is a blood thinner so she brought morphine.
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Old 07-19-2007, 10:20 PM   #14
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I've given it up a couple of times. Small stiff headache thing in the back of the neck for a couple of days, along with some sluggishness. Then I actually feel a lot better, but I'm missing a little bit of 'zip'.

Not going to be any sort of problem for me today. I spent 5 hours working on the old house and drank a 7-11 double gulp of mountain dew while doing it.
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Old 07-20-2007, 12:49 AM   #15
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I started guzzling drinking coffee when I was 19 or 20. Usually at least 10-12 cups a day...well, actually mostly at night. Drank that much or more up until a few years ago when some friends accused me of being addicted and unable to quit. I finished off that cup, and didn't drink anything caffeinated for about 6 months. No withdrawals, no headaches, nothing. After about 6 months I picked up where I left off.

These days I drink coffee whenever I feel like it, and as much as I feel like. Sometimes I go for months without any, other times a pot or 2 a day. Also, love my iced tea!!! I drink very little soda, and mostly not caffeinated.

But anyway you cut it, I've never had any aches, pains, illnesses, or anything like that from caffeine use or non-use.
I'm very envious of people with your constitution, Goonie. I love coffee, but became addicted on just one cup a day -- of course it was a quadruple-strength, crawl-out-of-the-cup espresso, but still, just one in the morning. The headaches if I missed my cup set in by noon and wouldn't go away with major headache relief, multiple cups of coffee etc until the next day.

So I bit the bullet and quit. It was pretty grim for a few days, and then, as CFB says, you're a little sluggish for awhile, but pretty soon you get used to the new slower you. It's probably healthier long term, but good coffee sure is one of life's pleasures.

Cuppajoe, don't worry about waking up late in ER -- you'll get up with the headaches, more or less on schedule.

And it's my experience after 7 years of ER that nobody really needs more than 8 hours of sleep unless they're recovering from a sleep deficit earlier in the week. Once you get that list of projects going, you'll get up more or less at a normal time. Unless of course your up to the wee hours posting here!
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Old 07-20-2007, 08:04 AM   #16
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I don't understand all this talk of sleeping in.

You are retired - don't you want to get up and start your day? You can do whatever you want to do! Why wait??!! You can sleep when you are dead!

Now, when I was working and dreading that first morning meeting and barrage of emails, etc, etc, etc, sure - sleeping in sounded wonderful. Now, I get mad when I oversleep, I want to start doing stuff, anything I want.

I drink a lot of coffee, but I don't seem to get a headache if I go without now. I used to get headaches w/o, but that might have had more to do with the change in sleep/wake times.

-ERD50
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Old 07-20-2007, 08:27 AM   #17
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I don't understand all this talk of sleeping in.
You are retired - don't you want to get up and start your day? You can do whatever you want to do! Why wait??!!
Different viewpoint here: I find that sleeping until I wake up naturally is very pleasurable. Rare, but enjoyable. I also enjoy a good but brief nap in the late afternoon when I can. Sleeping and waking whenever I choose is one of the things I look forward to in FIRE. Sleep is one of my treasured leisure activities.

Intentional early awakening so I can rush into all my leisure activities for the day? Naahhh. Sure, if there's something specific to set the alarm for, but otherwise I'll let my body clock will find its 8 hrs a day at its leisure.

Gotta go take a nap. Oh... wait.. I haven't retired yet.
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Old 07-20-2007, 09:11 AM   #18
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I read recently that coffee (not the caffeine in it, btw) can help prevent cirrhosis of the liver, so went back to drinking it. Between that and giving up scotch, the choice seemed easy...
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Old 07-20-2007, 09:18 AM   #19
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About 2 weeks after we returnd from our Alaska cruise, I came down with pancreatitis.....talk about pain! Anyway, earlier that morning I ordered a latte and I swear the barista didn't know what she was doing. It was REALLY REALLY REALLY strong. I don't know what the heck she did. The doctor's said that caffeine would not have caused my attack but, just in case, I have stopped drinking coffee. I might have a little decaf once in a while tho...maybe. BTW, I also gave up wine, but the coffee hurts more!
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Old 07-20-2007, 11:58 AM   #20
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Different viewpoint here: I find that sleeping until I wake up naturally is very pleasurable. Rare, but enjoyable. I also enjoy a good but brief nap in the late afternoon when I can. Sleeping and waking whenever I choose is one of the things I look forward to in FIRE. Sleep is one of my treasured leisure activities....
I tend to sleep in on Saturdays but get up earlier than workdays on Sundays and take a Sunday afternoon nap. Sundays look like a good bet for an ideal at-home retirement day. I sometimes get energetic in the evening and want to stay up really lateĖ-looking forward to giving it to that without the next morning consequences.
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