From Cocaine to Caffeine, Doctor’s Orders
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From Cocaine to Caffeine, Doctor’s Orders


This post was originally published on December 12, 2014.

Science World Report, aka the most annoying pop-up video ad and hyperlink heavy site ever, posted about recent findings that caffeine might help ease the side effects of cocaine addiction. According to the piece—and some doctor with the longest list of credentials I have ever seen—this is fresh, groundbreaking information. But to recovering drug addicts and alcoholics, this is old news. In fact, I am not even sure you can legally have a 12-step meeting without a vat of coffee. So on behalf of the recovery community, I would like to officially welcome the medical field to our beloved loophole: caffeine (and lots of it!).

Big Bucks for Seattle and Boston

Ever wonder how Starbucks has the balls to charge $5 for a cup of coffee? Drug addicts and alcoholics are how. It’s my firm belief that there is a direct connection between the heavy drinking culture of Boston and the soaring success of the Mass-based chain Dunkin’ Donuts, whose popularity has little to do with their pastries and everything to do with their delicious Joe. Speaking of, Dunkin’ Donuts recently began expanding to the West coast—announcing 200 new locations opening in California over the next few years. Is this an indication of a growing cocaine problem in the Golden State? Let’s hope not.

Going Beyond a Coffee Buzz

It’s no secret that lattes, energy drinks and Excedrin are very popular amongst sober people and have long been used as tricks of the trade when it comes to detoxing from any chemical dependency (for opiate addicts, insert chocolate)—except maybe nicotine (anecdotally, caffeine usually makes you want to smoke more). What addicts love is to feel almost anything besides their natural state. That is why so many of us are cross-addicted to drama, chaos and cutting (you’re welcome, Jerry Springer)—all ways of altering our feelings. While most of us don’t want to feel suicidal, as that is kind of an exaggerated version of our true authentic dispositions, many of us will take sad over blah any day of the week.

Gender Inequality

The article also mentions a difference between genders when it comes to cocaine addiction, which might have something to do with how it effects the menstrual cycle. Apparently, female cocaine users can completely lose their periods—while, I guess, male cocaine addicts just completely lose their minds (and sometimes their homes).

Photo courtesy of Tianliu (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons (resized and cropped)

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About Author

Danielle Stewart is a Los Angeles-based writer and recovering comedian. She has written for Showtime, E!, and MTV, as well as print publications such as Us Weekly and Life & Style Magazine. She returned to school and is currently working her way towards a master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. She loves coffee, Law & Order SVU, and her emotional support dog, Benson.