Caffeine

Do you think it’s safe to mix high caffeine energy drinks with alcohol?

Caffeine can carry real dangers.

Children and adolescents are at an increased risk when it comes to the effects of caffeine, yet compared to alcohol and other drugs the dangers of caffeine don’t get a lot of attention. While a cola or a cup of coffee isn’t likely to do any harm, energy drinks are definitely cause for concern.

  • 35% of Ontario teens (including 1/5 of students in grade 7) report having consumed energy drinks in the past year.
  • 12% 0f students report having had an energy drink in the past week.

There are unique concerns related to energy drinks and teens.

  • Children and adolescents are at an increased risk of experiencing the effects of caffeine.
  • Energy drinks often contain ingredients like guarana that act as stimulants in addition to the caffeine.
  • 61 adverse drug effects have been reported from consuming energy drinks. Seven of these occurred specifically in adolescents.

High caffeine beverages can have a serious effect when mixed with alcohol or other drugs.

Mixing energy drinks with alcohol is dangerous. When a person is impaired by alcohol, energy drinks give them a feeling of greater alertness and improved motor control. They then feel more sober than they really are and are more likely to keep drinking—leading to increased rates of injury, drunk driving, risky sexual behaviour or alcohol poisoning.

What’s more, energy drinks sometimes contain ingredients like guarana that act as stimulants in addition to the caffeine.

Did you know that 20% of Canadian students report mixing energy drinks with alcohol?

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