18 percent teenagers drink caffeine to stay awake: Study

New Delhi

A new study on Monday revealed that 18 percent of teens drink caffeine to stay awake.

A study conducted by the US-based Michigan University found that 25 percent of parents reported that their teenage children consume caffeine daily or almost every day.

“Our report shows that most parents are not aware of how much they should limit their teens’ caffeine intake,” said Susan Woolford, Mott pediatrician and co-director of the survey.

The study is based on information received from 1,095 parents of teenagers in February.

Parents reported that the most common caffeine sources for their teens were soda (73 percent), tea (32 percent), coffee (31 percent), and energy drinks (22 percent). They said they most often consume caffeine at home (81 percent), when eating out (43 percent), with friends (3 percent), and at school (25 percent).

“Caffeine is a drug that stimulates the brain and nervous system, and excessive amounts of it can cause a variety of health problems in youth,” Woolford said.

The study notes that the American Academy of Pediatrics discourages caffeine consumption by children and teens, and other experts recommend a limit of 100 mg per day for teens.

Nearly 60 percent of parents said they have heard about the dangers of overly caffeinated products, but nearly half said they rarely pay attention to caffeine content when buying drinks for their teens.

“Parents should talk to their teens about the negative effects of too much caffeine, and find alternatives so that they can try at home, at school, or out with friends,” Woolford said. ”

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“Parents can also engage the teen’s health care provider to explain the dangers of caffeine and strategies for reducing it,” she said.


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