A brief manualized treatment for problematic caffeine use: a randomized trial
The goal of the present investigation was to develop and test a brief therapist-guided manualized treatment for problematic caffeine use, including cognitive-behavioral strategies and 5 weeks of progressively decreased consumption.
Individuals seeking treatment for problematic caffeine use (mean daily caffeine consumption of 666 mg at baseline) were randomized using a waitlist-control design to receive immediate treatment (N = 33) or delayed treatment (∼6 weeks later; N = 34). A 1-hr treatment session designed to help individuals quit or reduce caffeine consumption was provided by a trained counselor along with a take-home booklet. After the treatment session, participants completed daily diaries of caffeine consumption for 5 weeks. They returned for follow-up assessments at 6, 12, and 26 weeks and had a telephone interview at 52-weeks posttreatment.
Treatment resulted in a significant reduction in self-reported caffeine use and salivary caffeine levels. No significant posttreatment increases in caffeine use were observed for up to 1 year follow-up. Comparisons to the waitlist-control condition revealed that reductions in caffeine consumption were due to treatment and not the passing of time, with a treatment effect size of R2 = .35 for the model.
A brief 1-session manualized intervention with follow-up was efficacious at reducing caffeine consumption. Future researchers should replicate and extend these findings, as well as consider factors affecting dissemination of treatment for problematic caffeine use to those in need.
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