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Quitting coffee, can it really make you feel better?


#2

Hi Emma,

I have drunk decaf tea and coffee for years, but when we went on holiday last year I drank caffeinated tea for 10 days. I do take caffeine in painkillers but not much. When we got home I had continuous unrelenting migraine for over a week and then it stopped, I figured that it was withdrawing from the caffeine again. So the usual withdrawal shouldnt be much longer than a week I would say.

Having said that, I came off the painkillers with caffeine in them just recently and for 3 weeks my severe vertigo attacks were more frequent, so I have gone back on the painkillers in small doses. Probably, if you are not taking it in painkillers or anything else you will just get the withdrawal from the coffee which shouldnt be much longer than a week. Along with the migraines I got achiness in the muscles for a couple of days, so if you are experiencing that, it will be the withdrawal as well.
Christine


#3

Don’t worry about the ibuprofen. It does not cause a rebound headache as other migraine abortive medications. Just take the ibuprofen with a meal or snack as it can irrritate the stomach if taken on an empty stomach. Kristen


#4

Hi Emma,

Well done finally giving coffee the flick. I know that has not been easy for you. The fact that you’re suffering after stopping suggests that it has quite a big impact on your nervous system. Hang in there and the headaches should stop and maybe you’ll feel better too. Hope so.

Scott


#5

When I gave up caffeine, I had a stonker headache for about a week so you should feeling a bit better soon.

Becky


#6

I have tried quitting caffiene three times now, and each time I didn’t find any benifit, just a non-stop headache that did not quit until I started drinking caffeine again. The one time it was six months long. I personally think (notice no doctor opinion here) that I drank so much caffiene when I was a teenager and in my twenties that my body is permanently dependant on it.

Granted, I don’t drink nearly as much caffiene as I used to, just enough to keep the headache at bay.

In case anyone is interested, I used to drink between 1 to 1 1/2 gallons of Mountain Dew plus a cup or two of coffee a day. BTW, I recomend anyone with children to try and prevent this level of caffiene intake as they grow into teenagers.

Brian


#7

— Begin quote from "kritlyn"

Don’t worry about the ibuprofen. It does not cause a rebound headache as other migraine abortive medications. Just take the ibuprofen with a meal or snack as it can irrritate the stomach if taken on an empty stomach. Kristen

— End quote

I wish you were right (I’m guessing you read Heal Your Headache), but this is just not true. I’m living proof, stuck in Ibuprofen rebound hell. :frowning:

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#8

— Begin quote from “Tranquillity”

— Begin quote from “kritlyn”

Don’t worry about the ibuprofen. It does not cause a rebound headache as other migraine abortive medications. Just take the ibuprofen with a meal or snack as it can irrritate the stomach if taken on an empty stomach. Kristen

— End quote

I wish you were right (I’m guessing you read Heal Your Headache), but this is just not true. I’m living proof, stuck in Ibuprofen rebound hell. :frowning:

— End quote

I am with Tran on this. Dr. Cherchi and Dr. Hain encourage migraine sufferers to not use pain relievers more than twice a week as they believe it does cause rebound headaches. I used to take Tylenol almost everyday for the 2 years before I was diagnosed with MAV. I have had to cut down.

As far as coffee goes, I have not found stopping it to be helpful in my case. Having said that, I am down to half a cup of half decaf, half regular and am going to stop on the advice of a nutritionist who believes it will help my stomach and digestion. It’s the only thing I ingest that makes me feel like a “normal” person. That’s why it’s been so hard to give up.

Molly


#9

Hi Everyone,

Thanks for responding! I’ve been off coffee for almost a week and a half now and the headaches are not going away…I’m going to give it another week to see if it gets better. When I asked Dr. Hain about what he thought about drinking coffee, he said that one cup a day doesn’t make a difference so there is no reason to stop. I did read the book “Heal Your Headache” so I’m not sure what to believe in anymore…See what happens…

Emma


#10

Hi Emma,
Sorry to hear you are still having bad headaches. Did you ever consider titrating down on the coffee just like getting off meds? Start with a cup of coffee, then the next day do 3/4 regular coffee and 1/4 decaf for a few days, then 1/2 regular and 1/2 decaf for a few days, etc. That has worked for me and I was a big coffee drinker (3 cups every morning). Unfortuntely my MAV symptoms have not improved since being on hardly any caffeine.
Good luck!
Lisa


#11

— Begin quote from “emmasaga”

Hi Everyone,

Thanks for responding! I been off coffee for almost a week and a half now and the headaches are not going away…I’m going to give it another week to see if it gets better. When I asked Dr. Hain about what he thought about drinking coffee, he said that one cup a day doesn’t make a difference so there is no reason to stop. I did read the book “heal your headache” so I’m not sure what to believe in anymore…See what happens…

Emma

— End quote

Emma,

I have found that most doctors have varying opinions, ranging from diagnoses, which test should be run, what meds work best, and as you found, caffiene intake. From what others have posted about their doctors opinions, “most” seem to agree that a little is OK, but prefer you to stop. There are a few though, including the author of “Heal Your Headache” that believe in completely stopping, no if’s what’s or doubt’s about it. If your headache doesn’t go away in the time frame you mentioned, then you may want to try Lisa’s suggestion about weaning yourself off of it. If that still doesn’t work, then you may want to do what I have found to be most benificial, which is to reduce my intake to as low as I can get away with without getting any haedaches.

Brian


#12

Emma…instead of quitting coffee altogether…have you thought about purchasing coffee with only 1/2 the Caffeeine? I purchase Folgers…half the caffeeine and drink approx 1/2 cup per day or every other day and i’m fine.

Joe


#13

— Begin quote from “Molly”

— Begin quote from “Tranquillity”

— Begin quote from “kritlyn”

Don’t worry about the ibuprofen. It does not cause a rebound headache as other migraine abortive medications. Just take the ibuprofen with a meal or snack as it can irrritate the stomach if taken on an empty stomach. Kristen

— End quote

— End quote

I wish you were right (I’m guessing you read Heal Your Headache), but this is just not true. I’m living proof, stuck in Ibuprofen rebound hell. :frowning:

I am with Tran on this. Dr. Cherchi and Dr. Hain encourage migraine sufferers to not use pain relievers more than twice a week as they believe it does cause rebound headaches. I used to take Tylenol almost everyday for the 2 years before I was diagnosed with MAV. I have had to cut down.

As far as coffee goes, I have not found stopping it to be helpful in my case. Having said that, I am down to half a cup of half decaf, half regular and am going to stop on the advice of a nutritionist who believes it will help my stomach and digestion. It’s the only thing I ingest that makes me feel like a “normal” person. That’s why it’s been so hard to give up.

Molly

— End quote

That’s one more here as well! When I was taking ibpuprofen last year when the headaches started kicking in, I started getting headaches every single day. When topamax started to work a little bit, I promised myself I would get off it. I stopped it around August and by late september I was headache free. I have not had a single headahce in months. And to think I was gettin them every single day and sometimes even waking up with them . Unreal. ibpuprofen is the devil!

Rich


#14

Hello,

Thanks again for helping me out.
Lisa I have tried to ween of coffee slowly but I haven’t had much success.
Brian I might have to try your approach to minimize the caffeine so I miss out on the headache…I too, been drinking coffee since I was a teenager so my body is very use to it.
Joe, I will look into Folgers if this doesn’t work!

Best,

Emma


#15

Hi all,

Here are my experiences with caffiene.

During my final year of high school I started drinking coffee to help stay awake and alert to study. I got hit with A LOT of migraines (my classic type), so I quit. I never really liked it anyway. The migraines pared right back.

I’m told by my coffee guzzlin g friends that if they stop they get blinding withdrawal headaches (these are non-migraineurs) for several days if not a week or so.

Only in the last few years have I started drinking tea. I haven’t noticed an increase in migraine but too much makes me racy, jittery, nervous and uncomfortable.

I HAVE discovered that Coke Zero (which as far as I’m aware is just Diet Coke rebadged to look more manly so men don’t feel wussy drinking it) is poison to me. Makes a lot of the MAV symptoms worse - anxious, spaced out de-realisation, jittery and generally wonky. I would kind of like to try Diet Coke again to see if there is actually any difference with the Zero but not sure I want to risk it!

Victoria


#16

Hi everyone, I noticed this thread and thought I would chime in. I completely gave up coffee for almost a year now and it has made NO difference! I have just as many headaches, maybe more because of stress etc, and am still as unbalanced. I’m actually thinking of having a cup or two every now and then because I like it but I don’t because everyone says it’s a trigger. Does anyone drink decaf? is it as good?


#17

— Begin quote from “TammyM”

Hi everyone, I noticed this thread and thought I would chime in. I completely gave up coffee for almost a year now and it has made NO difference! I have just as many headaches, maybe more because of stress etc, and am still as unbalanced. I’m actually thinking of having a cup or two every now and then because I like it but I don’t because everyone says it’s a trigger. Does anyone drink decaf? is it as good?

— End quote

It has made a difference for me giving up not just coffee but caffeine period. Are you drinking or eating other things that have caffeine in them.

Even decaf has some caffeine in it. There are some coffee substitutes out there that some folks use that might be worth a try…I do not use any but there are some folks on here that i think they do.

Have you tried the complete diet modification during this time to see if that will make any difference. It took about three months for me to really tell a difference. But things that are high in sugar are also a trigger for me as think that blood sugar swings also contribute to the headaches and motion issues.


#18

As far as I can tell I neither eat or drink anything else with caffeine in it, no chocolate, no soda pop no sweet drinks nothing. Is caffeine hidden in foods? I also don’t eat that much sugar as in sweet treats BUT I do love to eat carbs, pastas, bread, rice etc, they seem to be the only things that agree with my stomach! I am very unclear on how to figure out what my triggers might be other than weather (weather fronts just used to make me a little foggy, now a lot of times I think my head and ears might explode). My other vice is that I smoke, has anyone gotten relief from quitting? or cutting back? This stupid vertigo is so stressful I’m not sure if I’m strong enough to quit!
Any hints on what I can do to figure out triggers would be greatly appreciated???


#19

— Begin quote from “TammyM”

As far as I can tell I neither eat or drink anything else with caffeine in it, no chocolate, no soda pop no sweet drinks nothing. Is caffeine hidden in foods? I also don’t eat that much sugar as in sweet treats BUT I do love to eat carbs, pastas, bread, rice etc, they seem to be the only things that agree with my stomach! I am very unclear on how to figure out what my triggers might be other than weather (weather fronts just used to make me a little foggy, now a lot of times I think my head and ears might explode). My other vice is that I smoke, has anyone gotten relief from quitting? or cutting back? This stupid vertigo is so stressful I’m not sure if I’m strong enough to quit!
Any hints on what I can do to figure out triggers would be greatly appreciated???

— End quote

Order or buy the Heal your Headache book and try following the diet he prescribes in the book and follow his plan for a period of time and see if you notice any difference. It took about two to three months for me to see a difference but it was worth it…it will give you information about triggers and the migraine threshold. Worth the read…it was very helpful to me.

What about your sleep schedule I found that when I started going to bed at the same time every night (within 30 minutes) it was helpful. I prop my head up on several pillows as I cannot lay flat at all or it makes the symptoms much worse.

Exercise just a bit every day …walking is fine just do something.

Tammy I also smoked until about three months ago and I quit. Yes it has made a difference but I do not know how much bu I know it is the best decision I have ever made for my overall health…I wish I had done it years ago. Trust me if I can do it in the midst of all of this then you can too…if you want to quit I will be here to support you every step of the way. I can tell you what has worked for me and give you tips…but do not try to do the diet modification, lifestyle changes and quitting all at once…do one at a time and then move on to another one.

I did the diet modification , and lifestyle changes and then quit that is what worked best for me.


#20

Thought I should add that coffee –- whether decaf or normal – completely levels me the next day. Screaming head pain and increased dysequilibrium. I’ve swapped over to a chickory/dandelion mix which is fine and tastes great. S :slight_smile:


#21

— Begin quote from “scott”

Thought I should add that coffee –- whether decaf or normal – completely levels me the next day. Screaming head pain and increased dysequilibrium. I’ve swapped over to a chickory/dandelion mix which is fine and tastes great. S :slight_smile:

— End quote

What is the name of what you drink Scott? And where do you purchase it?