Living Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Psychopharmacology

pp 1-5

Date: Latest Version

Caffeine Intoxication

  • James D. LaneAffiliated withDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University School of Medicine Email author 

Synonyms

Caffeinism; Caffeine ‘jitters’; Coffee nerves

Definition

Caffeine Intoxication or caffeinism is a medical and mental health condition that encompasses a variety of unpleasant mental and physical symptoms, all associated with the consumption of excessive amounts of caffeine. Symptoms primarily result from exaggerated stimulation of the central nervous system or other organ systems when high doses of caffeine are ingested. Caffeinism can cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning. Symptoms resolve when caffeine ingestion is discontinued and the caffeine that remains in the body is metabolized and eliminated.

Role of Pharmacotherapy

Caffeine is generally accepted as the most widely consumed drug in the world. It is naturally present in coffee and tea, the most popular beverages in the world, and in cocoa, chocolate, and a number of other plants consumed in different parts of the world. Caffeine is added to a var ...

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