The most popular drug


Joseph Vargas, Staff Writer

Everyone uses this drug, including students and teachers. It is often found in tall paper cups or metal mugs and Americans are the number one consumers. It is considered to be the most used drug among America’s people and they are using this substance and becoming hooked to this psychotic drug. 

The drugs pervasiveness is a cause for concern with some scientists and public health advocates, but that has not discouraged buying it. Sales of this substance are booming and show no sign of stopping. Meanwhile, new stores are opening  fast all over the world, that not even the most dedicated devotee of the triple-shot, no-foam, double-chocolate, skinny macchiato can keep track of.

“Caffeine is a psychoactive drug, meaning it is a chemical substance that can alter your perceptions & mood, and it has a variety of effects on the brain, both good and bad depending on the person, dose, etc,” Psychology teacher, Wainwright said. “Your brain is your body; so how caffeine affects the brain is how it affects your body, which is how it affects you.”

One of the most common reasons most people are so dependent on caffeine is because it gives them energy. This often translates to better performance at school and work, and at moderate intake even improves mental health. The idea that coffee improves performance is appealing to many, especially students, who have a lot of homework and study long nights in order to get good grades in school. But, too much of anything can be a bad thing, as there are also negative side effects which affect your brain and change how those who consume this drug perform. 

“There seem to be no health risks from drinking lots of caffeine regularly, though, unless that is simply a band-aid over chronic sleep deprivation, which is the single most ignored public health crisis of modern America,” Wainwright said. 

When you begin to replace sleep with caffeine, it creates a problematic cycle. It causes people to lose sleep leaving them wanting more to stay awake the next day. Coffee has become such a staple of everyday life that you can barely go a block before finding a coffee shop, leaving students with easy access to the drug.  

“I drink coffee at least once a day. Usually at home and then in the first or second period,” sophomore Ella Marion said. “It makes me feel more alert and helps me pay attention better in my classes, especially the earlier ones.”  

Even though coffee is the main drink associated with the stimulant, there are various options of caffeinated drinks. With hundreds of different brands and drinks there are a variety of flavors and kinds of beverages. Drinks such as Monster Energy drinks,  Diet Cokes, and a cup of tea. Drinks like these contain different amounts of caffeine which can have a different effect on everybody

“Just notice how it affects you! I know some people who experience too much anxiety when they drink coffee, so they leave it alone. Others feel super-charged, like they can get anything done,” Wainwright said.

Caffeine does admittedly improve performance, but the consumption of the drug causes this increase and as a result, drinkers experience a short-term withdrawal of caffeine. Coming off caffeine decreases cognitive performance and hurts your mood. The only thing that caffeine is doing is just taking your performance back to normal, but only for a short period.

With hectic schedules and heavy workloads, it is not uncommon to find coffee cups and energy drinks. Caffeine is a drug that many people use and some rely on. Although caffeine is used to give the boost they seek in order to stay awake, there are healthier options if eight hours every night is not possible.