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Caffeine Essay

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Caffeine and coffee are a daily part of life for most people in modern society. The discovery of the coffee bean is said to have been in Ethiopia, when a sleepy eyed goat herder noticed his goats eating red berries, he then noticed the effect it had on them as they jumped and danced around him. He then tasted the berries and his eyes opened wide, he took them to the local village who also liked it and in particular the monks who used the berries to keep them awake during meditation.
The first documented medicinal effects were documented by philosopher and physician Avicenna Bukhara, also known as Ibn Sina, around 1000AD, where he said it strengthens the body and acts as an astringent (Dharmandana n.d.). Coffee use then spread through the Middle East and eventually reaching the shore of Venice in the early 1500s. By the mid-1800s, coffee and caffeine was being used in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurveda and Western Medicine. It was well known by this stage as a stimulant and was used widely in narcotic overdoses. The sources used for this review of the use of coffee and/or caffeine in a narcotic overdose include; The Materia Medica for Nurses (1897) and Caffeine as an antidote in the poisonous narcotism of opium (1860).
The Materia Medica for Nurses states that during an overdose from opium to administer strong black coffee and artificial respiration. The coffee is given through a tube into the stomach or rectum as it may be difficult for the patient to swallow. If a large dose of opium has been ingested it may be necessary for vomiting to be induced or the stomach to be pumped prior to coffee being given. Along with the black coffee external heat is to be applied as well as the bladder emptied through a catheter to prevent re...

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...a medicine. It also highly addictive and there is a chance for the treatment to be abused and hinder treatment for narcotic addiction by swapping one addition for another. There are also many other treatments in other sources published around the same time that offer different alternatives and may be slightly more effective than the use of coffee or caffeine.
Both sources state the same treatment for an opioid overdose with caffeine or coffee being the main substance. The two sources utilize caffeine as a stimulant to increase cognitive response and respiration. Coffee is also mentioned throughout both sources as being consumed daily by the general public and inform the chance of an overdose is very unlikely. By looking at both sources it can be assumed the caffeine and coffee are effective natural treatments for an overdose with mild, short lasting side effects.
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