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Coffee for adhd

(25 Posts)
Pootrouble Thu 20-Aug-15 10:43:14

Hi dd 1 is about to go into year 7. She has a dx of ADHD but we have never medicated- although reconsidering now due to high school issues etc. However, I've read people use and indeed doctors prescribe coffee as a stimulant for people with ADHD (an adult friend of mine self medicates with and he is dx with ADHD). Does anyone do this?? Or heard of it? We have alway kept dd away from coke and tea/coffee. Would rather try coffee than coke due to no sugar. Thanks

Pomegranatemolasses Thu 20-Aug-15 13:43:21

People do selfmedicate with coffee; but I've never heard of anyone doing this with a child.

I cannot imagine that this would make any noticeable impact - any adult I know who has done this seems to drink several cups of strong coffee - do you honestly think this is a huge improvement over prescribed medicine?

hashtagwhatever Thu 20-Aug-15 13:47:28

I have read that people do this but my dd is 7 so it wouldn't cross my mind to give her coffee.

Jasonandyawegunorts Thu 20-Aug-15 14:06:27

Are these people also claiming their children don't sleep?


Mrsmoneyworries Thu 20-Aug-15 14:55:04

I have also heard this. But I wouldn't suggest it for my son, who is 12 as he really struggles to sleep as it is.

Pootrouble Thu 20-Aug-15 20:34:35

But medicTion causes sleep issues am other side effects so surely trying coffee would be preferable to trying meds ? I may try and research it more, there seems to be a lot about it online

Mrsmoneyworries Thu 20-Aug-15 21:18:19

I'd be really interested to hear about any research you do.

Pootrouble Thu 20-Aug-15 21:21:01

I will let you know mrsmoney

Mrsmoneyworries Fri 21-Aug-15 09:51:42

Thanks Poo (sorry, feels weird typing that!) blush

MrSlant Fri 21-Aug-15 09:56:47

This is so interesting. I have one child diagnosed with ADHD and another one who probably is but don't feel a diagnosis would change anything so have avoided the dr trail. Eldest one had coke at a birthday party for the first time when he was about 8 and fell fast asleep in the middle of the afternoon! Now he is a teenager he makes himself a coffee every morning and it makes him really chilled/sleepy! I've always joked it was like giving him ritalin because something that makes everyone else speed up makes ADHD people slow down. I realise this is anecdotal evidence though so I am going to have a look to see if there is any research to back it up.

Branleuse Fri 21-Aug-15 10:01:50

If the ADHD comes with anxiety, it can make it worse ( a lot) but then so can certain medication. Using caffiene is also unreliable for results.

It is worth a try, but I wouldnt expect too much

MrSlant Fri 21-Aug-15 10:08:51

No, there's a lot of anecdotal evidence but not many studies. Can't find any recent ones and the ones I can find are very small groups. Branleuse makes a good point about anxiety as well, I probably wouldn't give it to DC3 because of anxiety issues wheras DC1 is a very chilled out well for someone with ADHD at least! He has ASD and I think a lot of the world just flies straight over his head making him not notice the worrying parts of life.

ovenchips Fri 21-Aug-15 10:14:57

Hi Pootrouble. I looked into this at one point and did post a few years back about supplements and other stuff you can take for ADHD. I am dumb but I can neither link to nor copy the post I did, sorry. If you are interested, do a search on my name + ADD + coffee.

I seriously cannot see any problem in having a trial and giving her a big cup of coffee in the morning and seeing if there's a difference. Good luck!

ovenchips Fri 21-Aug-15 10:19:25

PS I forgot to add, my daughter had a black coffee most mornings at breakfast and I think it did make her a little more focussed. It only started when she started nicking my breakfast cuppa and she's now right off it so is having none.

Caffeine can also kickstart a sluggish bowel so that may be a plus or a minus for you!

Pootrouble Fri 21-Aug-15 18:24:55

Thanks guys, dd1 doesn't have anxiety. We gave her a coffee this morning and she played in her room all morning without asking me anything!!!! Could be coincidence but she never does that. EVER! By lunch time she was bouncing off the walls and talking my ear off again, almost like a come down effect it seemed. I shall persist with my experiment for a few days then maybe add in a small lunch time cup and see what occurs!

kojackscat Sun 23-Aug-15 09:30:45

How do you get a child to drink coffee? , its a very adult taste.

zzzzz Sun 23-Aug-15 15:30:49

Add sugar and milk???grin

I was always told it would "stunt your growth" growing up. We all started drinking it at about 15.

I can't see any difference between a coffee or dark chocolate....

I'm not a fan of instant though.

Mrsmoneyworries Sun 23-Aug-15 19:16:30

It would be no good for DS then. He's highly anxious!

Pootrouble Sun 23-Aug-15 19:33:11

Ok we've tested Dd for the last couple of days. And.....
Results are good! It definatley takes the edge off! No incessant talking, no interrupting, no silliness, she was quite quiet and chilled for around four hours!! We have her a mug if coffee with milk no sugar.
I did some research and found out that a mug of coffee has the same effect on an ADHD brain that a 5mg (low dose) tablet of Ritalin does and both are meant to last the same amount of time 4-5 hrs.

I'm going to be testing dd with iced coffee so I can get her to take it in lunchbox for school. I looked at shop bought and it's very high in calories so think I will make my own and add saccharin as it's calorie free.

I haven't told dd about this experiment as I felt it would skew the results if she knew what I was testing for. I just said she needed to drink it for a week as I heard it helped give clear skin!! Lol. I also read that only small amounts of caffeine work beat so don't overdo it. Large amounts don't work at all apparently. We aren't going to give it at weekends so she doesn't get too used to it, as apparently it doesn't work consistently - although it has for us for now. Worth a try!

Mrsmoneyworries Sun 23-Aug-15 20:03:12

Very interesting results!

Oh, and I love the excuse you gave as to why she was having it grin

Pootrouble Sun 23-Aug-15 20:29:30

add is a nightmare in the mornings really buzzy and talkative and we noticed a definate change. I wouldn't do it if she needed sugar with it but she tolerates it without as I think it makes her feel grown up - her dads a coffee addict (probably an adhder too!)

Pootrouble Sun 23-Aug-15 20:29:57

That meant to say DD is a nightmare

BritabroadinAsia Tue 01-Sep-15 02:28:50

Hi pootrouble, just come over here to ask if the good results persisted? When does she start back at school?

Pootrouble Fri 04-Sep-15 19:18:03

Went back Thursday. Good results have continued, we have had two occasions where her over activity has 'overridden' the stimulant effect of the coffee and I guess that's where the difference between the coffee and medications is- that if they really want to be hyper then they can be with just caffeine to control them. Definatley worth a try though

Mrsmoneyworries Sat 05-Sep-15 09:20:28

Really happy you're getting the results you'd hoped for brew

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