Caffeine and Anxiety – Is it Really Dangerous?

Basically, anxiety is a feeling or condition in which a person experiences worry and nervousness. Usually anxiety attacks are characterized by impulsive and intense moments of apprehensions, nervousness and fear. However, many have often wondered if caffeine induces anxiety attacks. The anxiety levels of some persons who do not suffer from anxiety disorders can be increased if they intake an excessive amount of caffeine. However, for persons who do suffer from anxiety disorders, caffeine can induce panic or anxiety attacks.

Generally, the central nervous system is stimulated by caffeine as it interferes with the chemicals in the brain. Caffeine suppresses adenosine, a chemical in the brain which acts as a form of tranquilizer by inducing drowsiness and slowing down the nervous cells activities. Caffeine binds with the receptors o adenosine and blocks its actions. Unlike adenosine however, the nerve cell activities are increased by caffeine and it in turn increases your mental awareness. Conversely, the caffeine can increase your level of anxiety as well as cause other side effects associated with it.

Oftentimes after drinking beverages with caffeine in them, a lot of persons experience increased heart rate even to the extent that they feel their heart pounding caffeine can also induce nervousness and this can increase the anxiety level of persons. Another significant fact when it comes to caffeine an anxiety is that the adrenaline glands can be stimulated by caffeine to give off stress hormones. The over secretion of stress hormones can lead to several problems such as anxiety if left unchecked for a good amount of time. Adrenaline or the body’s “fight or flight” response can also be triggered by caffeine. Consuming excessive amounts of caffeine, and thus the over stimulation of the ‘Fight or flight’ response can increase your anxiety level. Caffeine usually can trigger panic or anxiety attacks in persons who suffer from anxiety disorders. For persons who do not normally experience anxiety disorders, their anxiety level can be increased with caffeine but no panic or anxiety attacks are triggered.

Consequences of Caffeine for those who suffer from Anxiety Disorders

Caffeine is more harmful for those persons who already suffer from anxiety disorders. Consuming an excessive amount of caffeine along with other anxiety triggers can lead to an increase in stress levels and anxiety levels for some persons, and eventually increase the possibility of panic or anxiety attacks. Insomnia is also another effect of caffeine, and this further increases stress and anxiety. Caffeine, however, is not the only factor which results n anxiety attacks. As a matter of fact, several other factors exist such as insufficient sleep and poor diet. Both of these factors can induce anxiety attacks in individuals. The effects that caffeine has on your anxiety level are also dependent on the presence of such factors. Persons who are prone to anxiety disorders may suffer from symptoms such as sweaty palms, nervousness, increased heart rate, and tremulous among other things, after consuming excess amounts of caffeine. These symptoms are the most common indications of anxiety.