What Is Wrong With Drinking Caffeine While Taking Antibiotics?

Coffee and antibiotics could make you extra jittery.
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Your morning coffee and your antibiotics may not get along well. Coffee contains caffeine, which is a stimulant. Like other drugs, caffeine from coffee or energy drinks can have some effect on how well your antibiotics work.


If your doctor prescribes antibiotics, your morning cup of coffee or energy drink could influence its effectiveness. In some cases, it can increase the potency; in others, it may decrease the potency. Or it may not affect the antibiotic at all. In other cases, the antibiotic may increase the side effects of the caffeine.

Antibiotics Affecting Caffeine

There are many types of antibiotics. They are developed and used to treat different bacterial infections throughout the body. As a result, each antibiotic can respond differently to caffeine. One interaction that can occur is that the antibiotic can make caffeine's side effects more potent.


Certain antibiotics can actually stop your body from efficiently breaking down caffeine when you consume it. If you take your antibiotics and energy drinks at the same time, you may unexpectedly feel more effects from the caffeine than normal. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, some symptoms that may become more evident with a caffeine-antibiotics mix include jitters, racing heart and trouble sleeping.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, you should not drink caffeinated beverages or eat foods with caffeine when you are prescribed Ciprofloxacin. Ciprofloxacin is a strong antibiotic that has a black label warning about its potential effects on your tendons. A black label warning is a message the Food and Drug Administration requires certain drugs to display to warn people of potential dangerous side effects.


If you are concerned about the amount of caffeine you drink and how the antibiotics may affect you, you should talk to your doctor. Your doctor can give some advice on how to reduce your caffeine intake or when to take the antibiotic with respect to your morning cup of coffee or energy drink.

Read more: How Many Cups of Coffee Can You Drink in a Day?

Caffeine Affecting Antibiotics

Caffeine is a stimulant found naturally in products such as coffee, tea and chocolate. It is also added to energy drinks, and can be taken in pill or capsule form. If you drink a lot of coffee, tea or energy drinks, or take caffeine pills, talk to your doctor about how your intake can affect your antibiotics' effectiveness.


A study published in July 2017 in the journal Acta Biochimica Polonica, found that caffeine can affect antibiotic potency. In some cases, caffeine may increase the potency of antibiotics. However, in doing so, it could cause "significant antagonistic interactions." The interactions are not likely to be fatal, but it could be quite unpleasant. This information suggests you should avoid large doses of caffeine, like the amount found in energy drinks, while taking antibiotics.

Read more: The Top 10 Beverages to Avoid

Your energy drinks and antibiotics may create unwanted side effects when taken together. You should also talk to your doctor about your daily coffee and any antibiotics you are prescribed. Your doctor should be able to tell you about known interactions between your antibiotics and caffeine.