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glenjamin's avatar

Anyone take caffeine pills on a regular basis? Any issues with that?

Asked by glenjamin (2480 points ) March 31st, 2011

I’m thinking of taking no-doz in lieu of coffee. Reason being I feel I need the caffeine to function properly but often don’t know how much is too much (or how much I am actually consuming with all the coffee I drink). I thought maybe by taking the pills instead, it would regulate my intake so that I don’t get too much or too little caffeine at any given point during the day. Any advice?

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8 Answers

Nullo's avatar

I tried ‘em once, but found that they had an uncomfortable amount of caffeine in them.
If you have a caffeine dependency, the solution is not more caffeine, but sleep.

glenjamin's avatar

@Nullo I’m not sure if I have a caffeine ‘dependency’ but I always feel like I need some kind of mental boost. This may be a side effect of some medication I am taking, all I know is that it blocks dopamine and stimulants seem to bring me back to some kind of normal. I’m probably going to talk with my doctor about this, thanks for the input.

ParaParaYukiko's avatar

My father, as he got older, found he was unable to drink coffee anymore as it gave him really bad heartburn. He started taking half a pill of No-Doz every morning (he agreed with @Nullo that one pill had too much caffeine) and stuck with that for quite some time with no difficulty. After that, I believe he weaned himself off gradually. He is retired, so he didn’t have early morning work or anything to deal with, but he was an early riser anyway.

Hope this helps somewhat. :)

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Yeah, they gave me headaches from hell when I quit taking them. The headaches were so bad that they would wake me up out of a dead sleep in horrible pain. Caffeine withdrawal sucks, and it seemed significantly worse coming off of the pills than quitting coffee or soda.

JLeslie's avatar

If you get off caffeine competely you will not have that caffeine withdrawal/crash you are feeling, the feeling that you need your caffeinated drink. It does suck to come off of caffeine, but once off, you will feel better when you need to wake, and calmer. If you choose to try it, cut down gradually over 4 or 5 days, and expect to fall asleep everywhere for over a week, and have a headache the first few days. If you do it when you have a long weekend or over a vacation, you can catch up on much needed sleep.

If you choose to stick with your addiction, figure out how many mg’s you consume of caffeine a day, and then take the equivalent in pill form. Which means the equivalent at particular times of day. If you consume a certain amount when you first wake, and then some more late afternoon, try to match it, Treat it like medicine, needing a specific dose. Buy a pill spliter if the pills are too much caffeine at once.

shared3's avatar

I’ve done this, since I have mild sleep apnea so I tend to wake up really, really groggy, no matter how much sleep I get.

Besides reminding you to moderate your intake, and recommending quiet meditation or a quick powernap instead of relying on caffeine, the only thing I would warn you about is that some people just can’t wrap their brains around the fact that the pills I take have less caffeine in them than what other people have in their coffee. They associate pills with serious medicine so they think it’s like 100x the dosage of caffeine in a cup of coffee. Back when I was in high school, I even got my little tin of caffeine mints (I think it was like 20mg/mint) confiscated once by an overzealous teacher…who ironically drinks coffee all throughout the day, and surely takes in much, much more caffeine than I ever did. >_<

Also, have you tried 5 hour energy? It seems to work for some people but not for others, and it can be pretty expensive, but it does have the advantage of not relying on caffeine alone, which you can quickly develop a tolerance for.

glenjamin's avatar

I tried it today for the first time, the effects seem to be milder than coffee (no rush really, and that was a whole pill – 200mg) but I still don’t seem to be tired/moody e.t.c. If it keeps working like this I might use them on a regular basis. I can deal with the caffeine addiction for now, it’s not as bad as other addictions (like smoking). Also, it’s alot cheaper than buying coffee everyday.

JLeslie's avatar

@glenjamin What I always say about caffeine is it is best to realize you are addicted and take it regularly or not at all. No need to constantly have your body going through withdrawals for a drug that is fairly acceptable to be addicted to.

Also, I thought you might be interested to know that regarding sleep, what caffeine is best at is getting rid of the tired feeling, the feeling you want to go to sleep. However, while addicted, people do not lose sleep per se, once at a constant level they are able to sleep similarly to how they sleep if they were not addicted. This is why people usually say, “I can drink a coke and go to sleep right after.” When you withdraw that property in caffeine causes you to feel more tired more often for several days, and indeed many people do wind up sleeping a lot because most people are sleep deprived in general.

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