Bouncing off the Walls

by Matthew Nachtman

of The Gleaner


Caffeine is a  tool that many use to help stimulate our daily lives, but at what point does it become an addiction? 

Many students get caffeine from sources such as coffee, energy drinks, and of course of the stronger caffeine sources, pre-workout. 

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, up to 73 percent of adolescents consume caffeine daily. When consumed daily, caffeine can easily become a problem, as dependence is quickly acquired. 

“Caffeine is awesome in moderation, like everything, but, unfortunately, with highschoolers and pre-workout it’s about having the most caffeine,” Mr. Joel Allen said. When it becomes a competition to have the most caffeine and not the correct healthy amount, it can get dangerous. 

In reality, caffeine is a drug. It provides benefits such as stimulating the brain, improving memory, and enhancing sports performance. However, caffeine can also cause irritability, fast heart rate, or dizziness according to Tri-County Healthcare

“Though adults can safely consume up to 400 mg of caffeine per day, according to the Mayo Clinic, kids and teens, age 12-18, should limit their intake to 100 mg per day,” stated a blog from Tri-County Health Care.

Most pre-workout drinks tend to have anywhere from 150-300 milligrams in a single scoop, and Mr. Clay Finley, the strength and conditioning coach, doesn’t think it’s needed.  “Since supplements are not approved by the FDA, we don’t even know what’s in them, which can potentially be dangerous,” said Finley.

Since high schoolers have young, developing brains, it might be safe to stay away from some of the higher dosed pre-workouts and other caffeine sources. The downsides outweigh the benefits, so it’s important to keep use under control.