Courtesy oh estelleI suppose that if you haven’t seen this already, y’all have at least imagined that you saw it: it turns out that regular coffee drinkers are three times more likely to experience hallucinations.
That’s right, a new study says that people who consume the amount of caffeine in three cups of brewed coffee (or seven cups of instant) have triple the risk of experiencing visual or auditory hallucinations
While it’s not totally clear whether the increased stress from the caffeine induces hallucinations, or if people who hallucinate are more stressed in the first place (and crave caffeine), it’s a concerning discovery for me. I already hallucinate heavily.
Mostly my hallucinations are auditory (the dog has had a lot to say recently, none of it interesting), though some are what I like to think of as “emotional hallucinations” (see, my pen hates me, but that’s okay, because my tape dispenser loooves me). Both types can be inconvenient, and so it’s fortunate that I’m not a coffee drinker.
However, there’s also this recent research: drinking a moderate amount of coffee lowers the risk of developing dementia or Alzheimer’s disease later in life by as much as 65%. A “moderate amount” of coffee is defined here, coincidentally, as about three cups a day.
So what’s a boy to do? If my risk for hallucinations is already at about 300% above normal, will coffee’s risk just add to that? Or will it compound? On one hand, I don’t want to be hallucinating that the dog is talking to me and forget what he had to say. On the other hand, I don’t want to spend my twilight years in a state of constant, violent hallucination—I want to while away my final years shoplifting and complaining about the youth (hallucinating no more than is absolutely necessary).
What do y’all think? Am I alone here? Or do I just have to discuss this with the dog?