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Opinions and Thoughts About Modafinil in the News

Modafinil is a potent drug known to medicate various types of sleep disorders very effectively. As an off-label use, modafinil is also known as a ‘smart drug’ due to its efficacy to promote cognitive enhancement, especially where qualities such as alertness and concentration are desired by people of different professions as well as students.

Opinions About Modafinil in the News
The wide range of authoritative publications have the varying latest coverage of this smart drug. Here are some of the few press coverage about modafinil.

BBC News

BBC covers about modafinil news – focusing on an individual called Benjamin Zand detailing his experience on the use of these tabs for cognitive purposes [1]. Being approved for narcolepsy, this “world’s first safe smart drug” is taken by individuals in higher numbers to achieve productivity at work.

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Modafinil is a highly potent drug that has benefits as well as disadvantages. For Zand, his experience with modafinil did not yield any benefit but rather caused side effects and a lack of productivity. The med caused him a very bad headache and made him lose his appetite.

After taking the tab, Zand began to experience the effects of this “wakefulness-promoting agent” – the increased focus and the initial burst of energy. Nonetheless, the use of this drug was associated with side effects such as an itchy lump on the back of the leg, becoming more dehydrated, and lack of being hungry.

Modafinil is an effective drug that can differently influence people’s bodies. The side effects of this med led Zand to speak to his doctor. The outcome of this visit was due to his liver that had triggered an enzyme aimed at flushing modafinil out of his system.

The Guardian

There are many citations about modafinil from the Guardian [2]. Modafinil is a popular medication for various purposes including off-label used for cognitive enhancement.

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The Guardian takes a different perspective introducing how this drug functions, giving various benefits to different individuals using the tablet.

To students, this pill is used primarily to boost their focus before an exam. According to Nature journal readers [3], a study reviewed that 1 in 5 respondents used meds for non-medical purposes to stimulate their memory, focus, or concentration, and 44% of respondents depicted modafinil as their med of choice.

Another review suggests that modafinil has several positive effects, especially in healthy people. The effects of this drug are responsible for enhancing attention, improving memory and learning. It also increases “fluid intelligence” that is the capacity to solve challenges/problems and think more creatively. This smart drug also makes tasks more pleasurable with cognitive benefits [4].

According to another study, from people already classed as creative, there was a small drop in creativity. Minor negative effects such as nausea, anxiety, and headaches were developed in people who took a placebo drug [5].

Vice

Vice reviews the pill and tries to answer the question “Why Can’t We All Take Modafinil?” [6]. According to the author, modafinil is much safer than Adderall. Modafinil is a smart drug that is sometimes known as a limitless pill as it turns young professionals and sleep-deprived individuals including students into energetic workhorses.

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The author states that the drug is used by armed forces [7] on long-duration missions and astronauts on the ISS [8].

Most countries including the UK, India, Australia, Germany, Mexico, and Canada have approved modafinil as a non-controlled prescription med. On the contrary, the USA classifies it as a Schedule IV controlled substance.

Vice depicts that the modafinil mode of action is not fully understood. This drug does not appear to directly affect the neurotransmitters. It acts indirectly on several different neurotransmitters (i.e. serotonin, GABA, and dopamine) unlike other stimulants such as Adderall, which function more directly on the dopamine system.

According to another research [9] discussed by Vice, modafinil is an effective way of treating amphetamine and cocaine addiction [10]. Some individuals use this smart drug for off-label purposes, ordering it from producers or vendors in countries such as India for the extremely low cost (about $2 or less per 200 mg tab).

According to the author, many people are taking this drug for other things as well. In particular, it is used as a cognitive enhancer. For example, a 2007 report [11] by Barbara Sahakian surveyed 1,400 individuals in 60 countries revealed that most of these people used the med to increase concentration. Still, 1/3 of the respondents acquired their medication over the internet without a prescription.

ABC News

This is a comprehensive article on Provigil titled “Provigil: The Secret to Success?” [12]. It’s a brand version of modafinil that is secretly taken by several people for success. It’s a smart drug that makes those using stay at the competitive edge and complete tasks more effectively.

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John Withers, a computer programmer, can write code for 12 hours at a time. In fact, according to John, taking this drug can help individuals focus for longer periods of time.

Provigil is approved only for the treatment of sleep apnea and narcolepsy or for administering by individuals who work irregular hours. That’s not all, the healthy population is taking it just to enhance focus and boost energy.

ABC News revealed that some people like Asprey starts his day early in the morning (around 4:44 a.m.) by popping a pill. It always gives him the best day of his life.

So should we be on this smart drug? Doctors give a different view on this med as a wake-promoting agent. But still, it may be associated with possible negative effects.

In fact, there has been no research proving that performance improves with Provigil. According to Getsy, sleep deprivation can actually worsen health condition, which leads, of course, to worsening of performance as well.

CBC

This is a CBC video on “Smart Drugs: Modafinil (Long).” It’s amazing how the author simplifies all the effects – be it the benefit or adverse reaction of this drug [13].

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It’s true, as off-label use, this drug (including Adderall) is the new med of choice. It is used by various people to stay awake, focused, alert, and productive. With these benefits, are there any downsides to hacking our brains?

It’s for those individuals, particularly from Silicon Valley, Wall Street, and students who need to think faster and work longer. These smart drugs were originally developed by the military to keep soldiers and fighter pilots awake and focused during long missions. They also give an extra boost in improving focus, thinking more clearly, and elevating moods.

These days, it’s not just pilots. Anyone and everyone is using smart drugs. Like any other med, negative effects cannot be fully avoided on the use of modafinil. It can be associated with headaches, vomiting, depression, anxiety, irregular heartbeat, and aggression, among others.

FOX News

Does this smart drug actually work? It does work for some individuals by boosting their performance, especially on long and complex tasks. The drug also enhances planning skills and decision-making. This is according to a new review of studies.

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Here is a complete thought on modafinil based on the Fox article titled “‘Smart drug’ Modafinil actually works, study shows [14].”

Having been approved by the FDA to medicate individuals with sleep disorders such as narcolepsy, many of those using this drug — such as professionals and students who take it to effectively study for exams — do this for off-label purposes, mostly without a prescription. The secret is that it is highly potent with fewer side effects, and it helps users attain alertness, stay focused, and complete complex tasks.

Recent studies found that modafinil, in fact, enhances thinking. It affects the higher brain functions, according to Battleday.

According to researchers, this drug improves only certain features of cognition called “executive function.” This smart pill enhances an individual’s ability to pay attention or alert, learn and remember, says the FOX News author, based on the research information.

Another thought found by the scientists depicts that this medicine did not consistently assist participants in simple tests of attention. In fact, scientists said the drug had little effect on creativity, and it did not significantly improve an individual’s working memory and an ability to divide their attention or flexibility of thought.

This drug has few negative effects that include insomnia, stomachache, headache, and nausea [15].

NHS UK

This is an in-depth article titled “‘Smart drug’ modafinil may not make you brainier [16].” It depicts that modafinil has been touted as a ‘smart drug’ that can potently help brain performance. The same med is very popular and used by university students.

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The article introduces the modafinil research based on 64 healthy volunteers to complete a spoken language test.

According to the author on NHS, modafinil’s test used in the research is only one measure of cognitive function, but the exact way to promote wakefulness is not fully understood.

Approved by the FDA, modafinil is a prescription-only med that is licensed for the remedy for narcolepsy and other sleep disorders. From the source, this drug is not without negative effects and may potentially cause serious health problems such as psychiatric disorders and skin reactions, if taken frivolously.

The research was aimed to determine the effects of modafinil on the performance of healthy individuals in the Hayling Sentence Completion Test.

The Hayling test entails listening to sentences with a missing word and providing either the missing word or a word unrelated to the sentence. This exercise was done because it is thought that the smart drug might improve task performance.

However, from the test, people using modafinil took a significantly longer time to provide a word, and the drug did not improve their accuracy.

Pharmaceutical Journal

Modafinil, a narcolepsy drug, is highly potent and improves learning, attention, and memory. In fact, this pill only has minor negative effects.

Post on the Pharmaceutical Journal

From the Pharmaceutical Journal article [17], this drug is available in the USA and Europe as a treatment for narcolepsy. This is according to a review published in European Neuropsychopharmacology on 20 August 2015 [19]. It is mostly used as an off-label substance, i.e. among students to improve memory, alertness, concentration, and focus around exam time. The drug is a piece of good news for them.

Based on researchers from the Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, and the University of Oxford, modafinil shows to improve attention, learning as well as memory – enabling individuals to be more alert, sharp, and focused.

The researchers also observed that negative effects were minor, such as nausea and headache. The author further elaborates on the research depicting that there should be further studies to examine issues such as long-term and short-term effects of the drug. This comment is according to James Giordano, the neuroscientist and neuroethicist, who is a chief of the Neuroethics Studies Program at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington.

Express.co.uk

Most UK undergraduates take modafinil to help them study. In fact, this medicine is highly potent as it improves focus, reaction time and alleviates fatigue levels.

Post on the Express.co.uk

In his book “The Genius Within”, David Adams shares his experience in using this smart drug mostly to “sharpen his senses.”

David Adams took the tab and waited for it to take effect. He felt good – like he was focusing on the words he wrote. He felt a strong connection to the writing and his laptop. In fact, he was thinking sentences faster as he could tap them out.

There are some uses of this smart drug including other conditions such as myotonic dystrophy, multiple sclerosis as well as ADHD.

Most of these pills can be ordered online. That’s what Mr. Adams did for his experiment. Occasionally, the tablet made him feel like he wanted to keep typing. That’s something he did. With the use of the pill, he could focus and be motivated. He would work several hours while still being alert.

The author also shows a list of previous athletes involved in a modafinil drug scandal.

Furthermore, in 2015, Harvard and Oxford universities analyzed reliable experiments and found that modafinil might be considered the world’s first safe and potent smart drug. However, these outcomes can only show for the short-term benefits, while nobody can really predict the long-term effects.

Discover more by reading the Express.co.uk article titled “MODAFINIL: Can THIS pill make you sharper and smarter? DEFINITELY says writer who tried it.”

NPR.org

The author of this media writes interesting news based on the research about modafinil. In fact, most people apply pharmacology to give them a boost to think smarter, faster, and longer.

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FDA approved this medication back in 1998 to treat narcolepsy. Since then, there has been increasing off-label use of the med prescribed by doctors in some cases for everything, from depression to multiple sclerosis.

Ahmed Mohamed is a psychologist at the University of Nottingham’s campus in Malaysia. From his study published in the current issue of PLOS ONE, Ahmed uncovered that modafinil slowed his volunteers down without making them smarter rather than boosted their cognition (based on 64 young individuals) [18].

NPR.org covers extensive opinions and thoughts about modafinil in the article titled “Are Modafinil’s Brain-Boosting Benefits Hype Or Science? [20]” Have access to it if you are interested in how modafinil improves wakefulness, enhances performance, and makes people more alert when using it.

Conclusion

Several authoritative publications cover comprehensive articles about modafinil. Modafinil news is presented in various formats in which most write their opinions and thoughts based on the research.

Although this particular pill is increasingly being taken by healthy individuals to boost their cognition, various countries are prohibiting the use of the drug, while the other ones require a valid prescription before administering it.

But a majority of people secretly use it to increase their performance. Most research work depicts that modafinil improves cognition and is a potent drug with fewer side effects.

Then the question is: should you be on this smart drug?

References:

  1. My ‘smart drugs’ nightmare. By Benjamin Zand. BBC Victoria Derbyshire programme. Retrieved: January 5, 2016. Bbc.com.
  2. Narcolepsy medication modafinil is world’s first safe ‘smart drug’. Helen Thomson. Retrieved: November 29, 2017. Theguardian.com.
  3. Poll results: look who’s doping. Published online: April 9, 2008. Nature.com.
  4. Effects of modafinil on non-verbal cognition, task enjoyment and creative thinking in healthy volunteers. Müller U, Rowe JB, Rittman T, Lewis C, Robbins TW, Sahakian BJ. Neuropharmacology. 2013 Jan;64:490-5. doi: 10.1016. Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.
  5. The Effects of Modafinil on Convergent and Divergent Thinking of Creativity: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Ahmed Dahir Mohamed. Retrieved: September 15, 2014. Onlinelibrary.wiley.com.
  6. Why Can’t We All Take Modafinil? By Daniel Oberhaus. Retrieved: November 30, 2016. Vice.com.
  7. The War on Sleep. By William Saletan. Retrieved: May 29, 2013. Slate.com.
  8. The space-flight environment: the International Space Station and beyond. Robert Thirsk, MDCM SM, Andre Kuipers, MD, Chiaki Mukai, MD PhD, and David Williams, MDCM MSc. Retrieved: June 9, 2009. Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.
  9. Mechanisms of modafinil: A review of current research. Paul Gerrard and Robert Malcolm. Retrieved: June 2007. Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.
  10. Modafinil Improves Behavioral Therapy Results in Cocaine Addiction. By Patrick Zickler. Retrieved: October 01, 2005. Archives.drugabuse.gov.
  11. Professor’s little helper. Barbara Sahakian & Sharon Morein-Zamir. Retrieved: December 19, 2007. Nature.com.
  12. Provigil: The Secret to Success? By Dan Harris, Lana Zak, and Dr. Mark Abdelmalek. Retrieved: July 17, 2012. Abcnews.go.com.
  13. Smart Drugs: Modafinil (Long). Retrieved: May 02, 2019. Cbc.ca.
  14. ‘Smart drug’ Modafinil actually works, study shows. By Laura Geggel. Retrieved: August 20, 2015. Foxnews.com.
  15. ‘Smart Drug’ Modafinil Actually Works, Study Shows. By Laura Geggel – Associate Editor. Retrieved: August 19, 2015. Livescience.com.
  16. ‘Smart drug’ modafinil may not make you brainier. Retrieved: November 13, 2014. Nhs.uk.
  17. Modafinil could be the first safe ‘smart drug’. By Suzanne Elvidge. Retrieved: August 26, 2015. Pharmaceutical-journal.com.
  18. Modafinil Increases the Latency of Response in the Hayling Sentence Completion Test in Healthy Volunteers: A Randomised Controlled Trial. Ahmed Dahir Mohamed, Chris Roberts Lewis. Retrieved: November 12, 2014. Journals.plos.org.
  19. Modafinil for cognitive neuroenhancement in healthy non-sleep-deprived subjects: A systematic review. R.M. Battledaya, A.K. Bremab. Published online: August 20, 2015. Sciencedirect.com.
  20. Are Modafinil’s Brain-Boosting Benefits Hype Or Science? By Maanvi Singh. Published: November 17, 2014. Npr.org.
  21. MODAFINIL: Can THIS pill make you sharper and smarter? DEFINITELY says writer who tried it. By Tom Gillespie. Published: February 5, 2018. Express.co.uk.