CAFFEINE + ALCOHOL CAN TURN YOU INTO A WIDE-AWAKE DRUNK

CAFFEINE WITH ALCOHOL MAKES YOU DRINK MORE, DRINK LONGER AND WANT TO DRINK AGAIN.  When you mix caffeine and alcohol, the caffeine counteracts the sleepiness and balance/coordination problems that usually come with drinking, allowing you to drink heavily without passing out or stumbling around.  This allows you to drink more and drink longer and causes you to underestimate how drunk you actually are.  Also, caffeine increases the high associated with alcohol and drives you to crave drinking even more. Furthermore, high levels of caffeine counteract some of the withdrawal effects that you usually get from heavy drinking leading you to believe that you don’t have a problem. 

CAFFEINE WITH ALCOHOL MAKES YOU MAKE POOR DECISIONS. With enough caffeine, you may not feel like you are drunk and you may not look like you are drunk but you still think like you are drunk.  Caffeine with alcohol leads to as much as a 400% increase in poor decisions and risky behavior.    

ALCOHOL ALLOWS YOU TO DRINK HIGHER LEVELS OF CAFFEINE – Drinking alcohol also can increase caffeine intake because it reduces the anxiety that is usually associated with high caffeine use (i.e. fewer caffeine jitters).  This can create a vicious cycle where your alcohol use increases your caffeine use which in turn increases your alcohol use.

FURTHER READING

Ferre, S. and M. C. O’Brien (2011). “Alcohol and Caffeine: The Perfect Storm.” J Caffeine Res 1(3): 153-162.

Caffeine Cocktail: Wide Awake And Drunk

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