View Full Version : caffeine on the adhd brain


hg12345
05-22-15, 11:35 AM
I'm curious how caffeine effects others with adhd. I have come across some research that states that although caffeine is a sns stimulant, it does not stimulate the correct part of the brain for adhd where as stimulant medications work specifically on the frontal cortex.
The only caffeine that has an effect on me is coffee. Other sources like soda or tea does not do anything to me. But even coffee has very limited effects on me and cannot be compared to stimulant medications.

Little Missy
05-22-15, 12:00 PM
I love coffee. Period. All day and all night. It makes me sleep real nice.

Sometimes a couple of cups of coffee in the afternoon completely changes my mood. :)

ChestRockwellNY
05-22-15, 02:55 PM
I am trying vyvanse again, took it for about 5 days, makes me feel really lethargic, I just can't do it. I am going to see my doc again in another week so maybe I'll try something else. coffee makes me feel a little antsy but I do enjoy a cup here and there.

I came here to post, and was actually going to start my own thread because I bought a Coca-Cola today and this is just BY FAR the best thing for my ADHD and it has been FOR YEARS! I have been trying to find something else so I won't have to drink Coke everyday, I am a 34-year-old male and just don't have the metabolism I once did so I have to worry about what I am putting into my body, but Coke makes me feel awake and alert, and I am able to focus. It also makes me feel happy. I can't explain it but it just does. At parties I try to drink a Coke here and there because it makes me able to stay engaged in conversations and makes me more social because I am not stuck in a daydream as much. I noticed this when I was younger as well that I always did well at parties with a Coke in hand because I was very involved and social instead of sitting in a corner zoning out.

Dark chocolate has a very similar effect on me as well. At my old job they sold dark chocolate M&Ms and whenever I was struggling to concentrate I would buy some of those and I felt the same way I do when I drink Coke. Yesterday I bought some of these http://shop.sweetriot.com/collections/all/products/flavor-65-cacao-nibs-12-pack, (NO I AM NOT A REPRESENTATIVE OF THE COMPANY, I JUST FELT IF I DIDN'T LINK, NOBODY WOULD KNOW WHAT I WAS TALKING ABOUT) and again, I was able to focus and felt very engaged and just very AWAKE, but not awake in the sense like I am all wired, like awake, that I am not stuck inside my own little world.

Long story short, until I find something in a pill that gives me the same effect as Coca-Cola and dark chocolate, I am just going to have to hit the gym more. They are not "life savers" by any means, but for me, they have been by far the best thing for my ADHD that I have tried and I feel a lot more ready to take on the world with a Coke in my hand.

ChestRockwellNY
05-22-15, 03:28 PM
I love coffee. Period. All day and all night. It makes me sleep real nice.

Sometimes a couple of cups of coffee in the afternoon completely changes my mood. :)

Little Missy, are you taking anything else for your ADHD or is just coffee what you are using? If you are taking something else, how does the coffee interact with it?

Little Missy
05-22-15, 03:57 PM
I take Adderall.

Mexican Coke is way better than US made Coke because they use real sugar and the US uses *gag* corn syrup. Mexican Coke tastes like it used to taste. Crispy and bubbly instead of bubbly and slimy.

I just like coffee. I don't think it has any effect good or bad on my ADD or my meds but some people are unable to tolerate caffeine on meds. I just had my afternoon super strong cup and I'm ready or the rest of my day.:)

Batman55
05-23-15, 12:22 AM
I'm curious how caffeine effects others with adhd. I have come across some research that states that although caffeine is a sns stimulant, it does not stimulate the correct part of the brain for adhd where as stimulant medications work specifically on the frontal cortex.
The only caffeine that has an effect on me is coffee. Other sources like soda or tea does not do anything to me. But even coffee has very limited effects on me and cannot be compared to stimulant medications.

Caffeine and coffee specifically helps me, a little bit, with everything, including socializing. As for whether it helps my ADD, my answer is "yes, 10+ years ago" but once you have the daily intake for years on end, it doesn't seem to improve focus much, anymore. But I do find skipping a day of caffeine intake (which, as an addict, is hard for me) makes it much stronger/better the next day.

I must admit I'm one of those with unusual sensitivity to all drugs, stimulants in particular. When I first really started getting into caffeine, it was a legitimately euphoric drug for me.. a damn good buzz. I continue to seek out that buzz (whatever is left of it) and that appears to be more important for me than any of the other common uses. I just enjoy things more when I'm on caffeine. Seems most folks just say they "need it to get up in the morning" and they don't understand there's other reasons for one to imbibe coffee. But I "need it to enjoy life".. hahaha. :p

Skyf@ll
05-24-15, 01:59 AM
I wish I could mix caffeine and meds.....damn I miss a coffee in the morning :,(

Powderbucket
05-24-15, 05:12 AM
Coffee does absolutely nothing for me. For some reason, it puts me in a horrible mood when I have it in the afternoon, unmedicated. It doesn't make a feel awake or anything like that at all.

I only have one cup in the morning, but that's more just a routine, it's not for any specific purpose.

speculative
05-24-15, 11:26 AM
Coffee is more of a security blanket for me at this point, although it can give me a little kick when I first wake up and am getting ready for work before my meds start working fully.

If I drink too much coffee, it can make me anxious...

If I drink coffee before bed, I often have longer, more vivid dreams, and remember more dreams when I wake up. (Although I have a harder time staying asleep during the night.)

I guess I should add that in relation to things like focus, my ability to switch gears (I have difficulties with my anterior cingulate gyrus), and impulsiveness, caffeine does not seem to affect those in any way, unlike medication does...

meadd823
05-24-15, 04:09 PM
Coffee and caffeine in general just makes me have to pee but at my age just about every thing has that effect!

Carol
05-24-15, 07:06 PM
Caffeine doesn't help my ADD. But the caffeine in tea bags does wonders for under-eye dark circles and puffiness. Just dip in ice water and apply.

hg12345
05-26-15, 01:02 AM
Coffee is more of a security blanket for me at this point, although it can give me a little kick when I first wake up and am getting ready for work before my meds start working fully.
That's exactly what it does for me! I make myself a coffee every morning but I hardly ever finish it. It's more that I'm afraid that without it I won't be able to function. Not that it does too much for me but it does stimulate my brain a little and me feel less foggy.

sarahsweets
05-26-15, 05:06 AM
I love coffee. Does nothing for my adhd though.

speculative
05-26-15, 08:35 AM
... but I hardly ever finish it.

I almost never finish mine either. I'm very ADD when it comes to food, and this also applies to coffee. On days I have to start very early in the morning, I fill a Thermos and drink right out of it during meetings. :)

mbrandon
05-27-15, 11:33 PM
Before I finally gave in to trying real medication i tried a lot of so-called alternatives.

Took 800mg of time release caffeine once. I felt great, calm, relaxed, mellow. Did nothing positive or negative to concentration.

I loooove the taste of good black coffee tho. Drink it at least a half hour after dose. After dinner and if it does anything it will help me go to sleep faster. Mmm coffee.

Pilgrim
05-28-15, 04:59 AM
Love coffee used to hate the taste but now I love it.

Was a real coffee addict because of untreated ADD, 15 a day.

Had to slow down. I think it does help ADD though. We love it

Batman55
05-29-15, 12:51 AM
Love coffee used to hate the taste but now I love it.

Was a real coffee addict because of untreated ADD, 15 a day.

Had to slow down. I think it does help ADD though. We love it

You said it, man!

hg12345
05-29-15, 06:19 PM
I almost never finish mine either. I'm very ADD when it comes to food, and this also applies to coffee. On days I have to start very early in the morning, I fill a Thermos and drink right out of it during meetings. :)
Im also ADD when it comes to food! I always eat on the go, while im doing a million things. I never actually sit down for meal. Most of the time I start eating, get busy with something else and completely forget that I was in the middle of eating. It can take me hours to remember that I only ate half my food, and that usually occurs when I see my plate and its still full!
Sometimes this actually bothers me a lot because if my family is having dinner together, I just cant sit and eat without doing anything else and i end up losing out on family time.

Elizabeth83
05-31-15, 03:48 PM
^^ lol i get stressed out majorly when i do that to myself and sometimes i cant help it.
I love love love Caffeine. i can enjoy it plenty as long as i eat enough food, get enough rest and exercise. When those theee things get out of whack, Caffeine completely stresses me out more and i get anxiety bad. Can never give it up.

Some days while medicated i do consume some lightly sweetened tea (im a southerner) and it gives me an extra boost. Coffee is too much while on adderall though.

Little Missy
05-31-15, 04:03 PM
Enjoying a restorative cup right now. :)

willow129
05-31-15, 04:40 PM
I guess I should add that in relation to things like focus, my ability to switch gears (I have difficulties with my anterior cingulate gyrus), and impulsiveness, caffeine does not seem to affect those in any way, unlike medication does...

What is the anterior cingulate gyrus?

Coffee/caffeine used to definitely give me a buzz. I think I did feel a bit happier and I would feel more like doing stuff. But that was really sporadic, whether or not it made me feel that way. Sometimes it didn't really do anything, but just kinda made me feel shaky and weird, and make my stomach a little upset. Then it started giving me panic attacks too. Agh! I still get panic attacks from it, so I stopped drinking anything with caffeine. Also I find it really does make it difficult for me to sleep - accidentally had caffeinated tea with dinner about a month ago and I was tossing and turning forEVER that night.

When I took my first adderall, I was like, huh I feel like I've felt this way before, kind of...and I realized it was similar to the caffeine feeling. Is that weird?

eclectic beagle
05-31-15, 08:38 PM
Love coffee used to hate the taste but now I love it.

Was a real coffee addict because of untreated ADD, 15 a day.

Had to slow down. I think it does help ADD though. We love it

I have to drink coffee (typical refrain of the addict) because sody-pop is too rough on stomach. It's the only thing that reasonably works. Only drink about a cup a day though.

Ragnarok
06-01-15, 03:47 AM
Caffeine doesn't seem to have any effect on me. I do get a little kick from drinking soda, but I think it's just the sugar making me feel temporarily energized.

phazonConduit
06-01-15, 04:01 AM
Caffeine works pretty well with my medication (Wellbutrin XL) and it has become my partner in crime when working on assignments late at night.

I've managed to impulsively buy myself these 3-cup sized mason jars that I just throw ice in and hot coffee on top. It gets me going with my reading and as soon as I can no longer go, it makes sleeping much easier for me.

Energy drinks (sugar-free Rockstars!) are like a drug to me in that I only ever drink them during crunch time. I often find myself drinking them to calm down, and it actually works. I feel more concentrated.

The only downside is getting the runs in the most inopportune times.

Muggzy
06-01-15, 01:49 PM
I can drink strong coffee drinks to replace my Adderall when I run out and have forgotten to go refill. Of course when I say "coffee drink" I am buying 5-6 shot espresso mochas that my wife and most friends say they couldn't handle because of how wound up and jittery they would feel.
A regular cup of coffee from the Keurig or at a diner does nothing for me though.

My step daughter, I suspect has ADD, and she will drink 1-3 7-8 shot "Americano"s a day, they make me sick, straight espresso and water...shudder!

acdc01
06-01-15, 02:49 PM
Caffeine helps me a lot off meds. I can feel very groggy before drinking coke in the morning and then afterward, I still feel a bit sleepy but less so and more alert.

On meds, it doesn't help. I even wonder if it increases hyperactivity and anxiety when I'm on meds.

Thanks for the eyebag teabag tip Carol. Will have to try that. Think many of us have eye bags due to lack of sleep and genetics.

Batman55
06-02-15, 12:56 AM
I can drink strong coffee drinks to replace my Adderall when I run out and have forgotten to go refill. Of course when I say "coffee drink" I am buying 5-6 shot espresso mochas that my wife and most friends say they couldn't handle because of how wound up and jittery they would feel.
A regular cup of coffee from the Keurig or at a diner does nothing for me though.

My step daughter, I suspect has ADD, and she will drink 1-3 7-8 shot "Americano"s a day, they make me sick, straight espresso and water...shudder!

To me, all this seems quite extreme!

If I tried any of this I would be having a lot of heart palpitations and it would be really unpleasant!

mbrandon
06-07-15, 10:47 PM
Caffeine doesn't help my ADD. But the caffeine in tea bags does wonders for under-eye dark circles and puffiness. Just dip in ice water and apply.

What is this?

mbrandon
06-07-15, 10:52 PM
Energy drinks (sugar-free Rockstars!) are like a drug to me in that I only ever drink them during crunch time. I often find myself drinking them to calm down, and it actually works. I feel more concentrated.

The only downside is getting the runs in the most inopportune times.

Hahaha yes! For some reason the sugar free rock stars are the only ones that really work for me. And it took me awhile to figure out what caused that lol.

Since meds I have stopped drinking those. Meds have really straightened me out. I do kinda miss the 3-4 rock stars a day days tho... :D

stef
06-08-15, 12:14 AM
I love coffee. Period. All day and all night. It makes me sleep real nice.

Sometimes a couple of cups of coffee in the afternoon completely changes my mood. :)

OMG I love coffee!!! must have it to function.
I probabaly have 4 cups per day. any more makes me jittery.i'm not on any meds. In the states I get a huge buzz from just a tall starbucks, Iced coffee late afternoon is lovely.

That's really interesting about coke! I thought I just didn't like it any more because I prefer diet coke now.,oops i quoted the wrong post.

Little Missy
06-08-15, 08:34 AM
OMG I love coffee!!! must have it to function.
I probabaly have 4 cups per day. any more makes me jittery.i'm not on any meds. In the states I get a huge buzz from just a tall starbucks, Iced coffee late afternoon is lovely.

That's really interesting about coke! I thought I just didn't like it any more because I prefer diet coke now.,oops i quoted the wrong post.

US did the tricky switch to corn syrup -cheaper- when they came out with New Coke. They did for about a year and then when they 're-introduced' Classic Coke it had corn syrup in it. Wiki tells the dates of the duping.

I couldn't wait for Classic Coke to come back and when it did I instantly knew it was not the same. Hated it.

Australia uses real sugar in Coke, at least they did, I don't know, I don't research Coke anymore after I found out the reason it tasted wrong and slimy.

But when Mexican Coke began appearing in stores the difference was...heaven!

Little Missy
06-08-15, 08:37 AM
Coffee in the morning is just plain good. Coffee at a low point in the afternoon definitely changes my mood for the better. It just works.

My dad drank so much coffee he had a Sunbeam Superfast in his garage, by his chair in the living room and in the kitchen.

aeon
07-06-15, 12:43 PM
Before I had my Dx I used to use caffeine "medicinally." I'd get 2 sugar-free NOS energy drinks for $3 from my corner gas station, kinda chug them, and then go grocery shopping.

The 520mg of caffeine would turn me into a task monster.

I would time myself for the parts of the multi-store run. It was a challenge to myself to do it all as efficiently as possible. While I had a kind of intense, sick focus, I was also anxious and nervy, and I could become quickly irritated with things that got in "my way," e.g., traffic, parking, other shoppers, etc.

Please understand, even with these downsides, it still made the task possible. Unmedicated, the simple task of grocery shopping becomes a long and arduous task. I simply cannot resist looking at arrays and displays of things I've seen 100 times before. Those fruit preserves labels are so lovely and my, would you LOOK AT ALL THOSE FLAVORS?!

These days, I shop on dextroamphetamine, a much better choice for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that I can be focused, calm, and pleasant to the people around me, all at once.

I don't enjoy caffeine any longer. It does provide a push of energy, but what it does to my anxiety, sleep pattern, and volume of poorly-tuned radio static in my head makes it not worth it.

And I must say, ~125mg of caffeine while I am on my meds...it's really, really bad. It leads to normally-dormant behaviors that result in minor injury...cuticle picking, nail biting, cheek chewing...harmless enough, but I do them to the point of drawing blood. And then there is the state of mind...I'm sure it has a classification code in the DSM/ICD.

So a single tea or soda, no problem, and I can enjoy caffeine on that level, but anything more while on meds quickly becomes a kind of inner hell where the better parts of myself are inaccessible to me.

LetoII
07-08-15, 02:20 PM
Generally speaking, my mind when I don't take ritalin or adderal (I just switched) is like toon town from Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

From a young age I've preferred tea over coffee. What I found with coffee is either the amount of caffeine or the way it is made just makes me physically hyper, but my mind is all over the place. Tea, on the other hand, physically calms me. It doesn't have my mind go all over the place. I think it's just the right amount of caffeine. That, and it helps with the meds because they tend to make me really tired in the first hour. So for me, the tea and meds actually interact in a highly beneficial way.

SirSchmidt
07-08-15, 03:07 PM
I've been having an iced black tea in the afternoons, around 2:30. It helps to retain my focus for the last three hours of work and doesn't make me jittery at all.

With Adderall, my focus is pretty good all day, with a slight dip in the mid afternoon and then trails off around 7pm. I use tea as needed to fill in the gaps.

LetoII
07-11-15, 02:09 PM
I read somewhere that the caffeine level in tea, or something about it, tends to not make those without a huge tolerance jittery. Coffee has me all over the place and the crash is intense. Tea, on the other hand, keeps me just right.

(This, of course, has turned me into a tea snob. I'm all about the unsweetened, loose-leaf. Others say it can be really bitter but I'm like, "Omg, it's so good!")

Bethylphenidate
01-13-16, 04:50 PM
I think caffeine helps me, to a minor but noticeable degree.

Is it helping my ADHD specifically? I'm not sure, but I know I feel a positive difference shortly afterwards.

Too much caffeine can have adverse effects on me, but I typically limit myself to one coffee per day. I love the local coffee here, so if nothing else, it makes me happy. :D