Monday, November 08, 2004

Who's Crazy Here?

Soon, the Drug Enforcement Agency could be knocking down your door in search of that stash of coffee in your house. The National Institute on Drug Abuse has supported a review aimed at including caffeine withdrawal as a disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV).

Basically, a tentative research diagnosis of caffeine withdrawal is already listed in the DSM-IV. The listing is meant to encourage additional research on the very utility of the diagnosis of caffeine withdrawal. Some scientists do a literature review in hope to empirically validate specific signs and symptoms of human caffeine withdrawal, and to describe important features of this syndrome. Their conclusion:

"The caffeine-withdrawal syndrome has been well characterized and there is sufficient empirical evidence to warrant inclusion of caffeine withdrawal as a disorder in the DSM..." the authors write.

Translation: first we get caffeine withdrawal listed as a firm disorder diagnosis in the DSM, then we generate enough hype to convince you that you can't possibly make responsible decisions about your own health without state supervision, and finally we outlaw caffeine and prosecute you for using it. Viva the nanny state!


At 10:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whew, I'm sure glad they'll never do anything like that with tobacco...


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