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How to Reduce Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms

by
author image Sandra Ketcham
Sandra Ketcham has nearly two decades of experience writing and editing for major websites and magazines. Her work appears in numerous web and print publications, including "The Atlanta Journal-Constitution," "The Tampa Bay Times," Visit Florida, "USA Today," AOL's Gadling and "Kraze Magazine."
How to Reduce Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms
woman with caffeine withdrawal headache Photo Credit Alliance/iStock/Getty Images

Caffeine is a stimulant found in many foods and drinks that increases energy and alertness. Unfortunately, caffeine is addicting, and stopping caffeine, especially if you go cold turkey, can cause withdrawal effects ranging from mild headache and fatigue to severe head pain, drowsiness and inability to function effectively. You can reduce caffeine withdrawal symptoms by gradually cutting back on the stimulant and taking it easy for several days after quitting. Consult your doctor if you suffer from anxiety, depression, heart disease or another condition before stopping caffeine cold turkey.

Step 1

How to Reduce Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms
woman taking notes Photo Credit Thomas Pullicino/iStock/Getty Images

Determine how much caffeine you take in each day by recording your intake for several days in a notebook. Include caffeine from drinks as well as less obvious sources, such as medications, chocolate and other foods. Knowing how much you take in enables you to create a plan for gradual withdrawal to minimize withdrawal symptoms.

Step 2

How to Reduce Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms
woman holding coffee cup Photo Credit Choreograph/iStock/Getty Images

Eliminate one caffeinated beverage per day for a few days before cutting out additional caffeine. Gradually reducing your caffeine intake will reduce the severity of your withdrawal effects. After several days, eliminate a second drink or other source of caffeine.

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Step 3

How to Reduce Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms
cup of herbal tea Photo Credit Alberto Bogo/iStock/Getty Images

Drink herbal tea, fruit juice, hot apple cider or other drinks in place of caffeinated drinks. These will soothe you and ensure that you remain hydrated. Becoming dehydrated can worsen headache and other withdrawal symptoms.

Step 4

How to Reduce Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms
woman brewing decaf coffee Photo Credit moodboard/moodboard/Getty Images

Switch to decaffeinated tea or coffee if you truly must have that first cup in the morning, or brew your coffee or tea for a shorter length of time to reduce the caffeine content of the beverage.

Step 5

How to Reduce Caffeine Withdrawal Symptoms
woman sleeping in bed Photo Credit tetmc/iStock/Getty Images

Allow yourself extra rest while going through caffeine withdrawal. This will help combat the fatigue associated with stopping caffeine.

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