Coffee Takeover Gives Teens a Caffeine Boost

There has been a noticeable difference in the amount of tweens and teens who have been drinking coffee compared to previous years
Students pose with the various coffees that they brought to school.
Students pose with the various coffees that they brought to school.
Anumitha Vaka

For a long time coffee has been known as the drink of choice for adults. Coffee gives people the much needed boost of energy and added focus to help start their day. However, nowadays when you walk the halls or when you are sitting in a classroom you can find multiple students with a coffee cup in hand. Over the span of just a few years coffee and caffeinated drinks have become the drink of choice for tweens and teens. Should we be alarmed, and what is causing this coffee takeover? 

“I’m just a little afraid of what’s happening. It might drive us all a little insane once we get older…and the addiction.”

— Bryleigh Conley (12)

A lot of times coffee is known amongst tweens and teens for being a sugary drink that boosts your energy. While the amount of sugar that is being consumed as part of coffee is alarming, the more pressing problem is the amount of caffeine. Caffeine is a drug, a legal drug but it is still a drug that you can get addicted to.

Caffeine may be good while it last, but it does contain some effects and concerns. PLTW Biomed teacher Mrs. Strathman shares what she thinks about the new trends.

“Well, first of all coffee or specifically the caffeine in it dehydrates you. Caffeine inhibits the release of the antidiuretic hormone which helps maintain water balance in the body. So, when students already aren’t drinking enough water, drinking coffee just adds to dehydration. Also, coffee has an effect on the cardiovascular system. If you’ve taken too much you know this, you feel your heart race. I don’t know all that much about caffeine’s effect on growth and development, but anytime you’re taking a drug in excessive amounts it’s probably not good,” Strathman explained.     

With people drinking coffee and caffeinated drinks at a younger age they’re developing a taste and tolerance for the drink at a younger age making them more susceptible to addiction. In fact, according to a study, 73% of children in the US drank some form of caffeine on a daily basis. After conducting many interviews with students who are regular coffee drinkers the average age for starting to drink coffee amongst the students was 12. These are alarming findings as according to the article by Cleveland Clinic, “The Young and the Restless: Why Kids Should Avoid Caffeine” for kids ages 12 and under no amount of caffeine is considered safe. 

Now coming to the matter of more students being seen drinking coffee at school, many students have also caught on to this trend amid their peers. Sophomore Ryleigh Christy says she started drinking around 8 or 9 and currently drinks coffee about everyday.

“I’ve definitely noticed a lot more younger people are drinking coffee. I’ve noticed a lot of students here at Liberty bringing coffee to school. I think they’ve probably seen their friends or their parents drinking coffee. I have ADHD so drinking coffee actually calms me down and helps me keep track of my thoughts. At the same time I also have really bad gut health so it basically kills me every time but I get over it.” Christy told. 

Another sophomore, Naudia Watson-Booker, also talked about observing more students drinking coffee as well as her theory as to why it might be happening.

“I’ve definitely noticed it and I think Starbucks has become more popular. A lot more people have been drinking coffee more regularly than normal,” Watson-Booker stated. 

Watson-Booker’s explanation as to why more tweens and teens are drinking coffee isn’t far from the truth. We’ve seen it here locally the new found craze for 7 Brew, the new coffee shop that just opened near the school. There is a lot more variety in coffee and caffeinated drinks than say 10 years ago. Flavors like Caramel Frappuccino, Pink Drink, and Matcha Latte are all very viral on social media and appeal to younger consumers with their bright colors and sweet flavors. 

Now, it is totally okay if you drink coffee or caffeinated drinks. It is just important that you consume these drinks in moderation as it is still a drug. Strathman adds on to this by giving advice to students about consuming caffeinated drinks. 

“It is a drug so be careful,” Strathman advises. “Even though it is a legal drug, it can still have harmful effects. So make sure if you are drinking coffee do so in moderation. Listen to your body if you’re shaky or nauseous, or your heart’s racing. You are clearly consuming too much and you need to cut back. If you don’t drink coffee for a day and you have a headache that means you are addicted. So that’s another thing, it’s a drug so you can get addicted to it, so be mindful of that.” 

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About the Contributor
Anumitha Vaka
Anumitha Vaka, Editor-in-Chief of Clubs
Anumitha Vaka is the first publications editor-in-chief of clubs, and is currently a senior. Anumitha is also in her second year at SCC working towards an associate of arts: arts and sciences degree. Anumitha is in her third year of publications, and is currently a part of magazine being previously a part of online news and journalism having worked on many videos and stories in the past. Anumitha is also a member of Key Club cabinet, HOSA, and NHS. In her free time Anumitha loves to read, write, and watch tv. After high school, Anumitha hopes to go to a university for pre-med. 

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