Special Report

Drinking Too Much Coffee and 18 Ordinary Habits That Can Be Signs of Serious Health Problems

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1. You stay up all night: Job burnout

Even though burnout is a well-known phenomenon. It was officially classified as a medical diagnosis by the World Health Organization in May 2019. Burnout, first described in 1974 by psychologist Herbert Freudenberger, is the feeling of chronic work-related stress that has not been managed. Lack of sleep is just one common symptom of the many associated outcomes. Others include exhaustion, lack of motivation, forgetfulness, and pessimism.

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2. You spend a lot of money: Bipolar disorder

Impulsive overspending has been linked to bipolar disorder. If handling money well — including spending within your means and making thoughtful decisions about purchases — is a challenge, a manic episode may be the cause.

In such cases, you may suddenly decide to go to China or spend thousands of dollars on art or tattoos. People affected by manic spending episodes often feel overconfidence, which leads to the brain basically silencing one’s voice of caution.

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3. You bite your nails: Depression or OCD

Nail biting, or onychophagia, is associated with anxiety and stress. The mere act of chewing on the cuticle, soft tissue surrounding the nail, and the nail itself, which, for most people, typically begins in childhood, relieves tension. This bad habit, for which there is no clear or definitive solution, can be masking a mental health problem, such as depression. Medical reviews suggest that 80% of children and more than 50% of parents who bite their nails have a form of a psychiatric disorder, mainly depression. In 2013, the American Psychiatric Association included severe nail biting in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual as an obsessive compulsive-related condition. A study found that approximately 11% of children and adolescents who bite their nail frequently were also diagnosed with OCD.

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4. You drink a lot of coffee in the afternoon: Thyroid dysfunction

If people need a lot of coffee later in the day, they may have an underlying hormonal issue caused by a dysfunctional thyroid gland. A major sign that the tiny but powerful butterfly-like gland at the base of the neck doesn’t produce enough of the hormones that control how the body uses energy is chronic fatigue.

And what do most people do when they feel tired but it’s not bedtime yet? They drink coffee. Alas, caffeine, although a stimulant, inhibits thyroid function, according to Alyson Pidich, medical director of the Ash Center — even four hours after consumption.

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5. You wheeze a lot: Reflux disease

You can have acid reflux without the heartburn. Surprising other signs include wheezing. GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease, can cause as well as trigger many pulmonary conditions. The irritation of the esophagus can lead to symptoms ranging from abdominal pain to wheezing.

Wheezing, which is breathing with a rattling sound in the chest due to obstruction in the air passages, occurs in patients with GERD because stomach acid gas creeps up into the esophagus and enters the lungs, causing swelling of the airways.