For many business executives and students, they are often seeking ways to enhance levels of motivation and focus. Two of the popular options that are being researched, include both Modafinil and Adderall. These drugs are often prescribed to individuals who suffer from narcolepsy, as they promote wakefulness.
The same is true for ADHD patients, although only Adderall has been approved by the FDA for this purpose. However, psychiatrists are also able to prescribe Modafinil off-label. Both of these drugs most certainly have similar effects, but how do they differ?
The Effects of Modafinil and Adderall
While focusing on both of these drugs, the exact mechanism of action is not known. With that being said, researchers do know which areas of the brain these drugs affect. Since each individual is unique in terms of their brain chemistry, these drugs can also affect people differently.
The Effects of Modafinil
Modafinil effects different areas of the brain, all at the same time. This creates its unique stimulation effect. Researchers believe that Modafinil influences GABA, histamine, glutamate, and noradrenaline levels. Based on its mechanism of action, it creates a natural sense of wakefulness.
By taking Modafinil, users can also boost levels of motivation, helping to increase productivity. Users also report improved mood, as well as an enhanced ability to focus. This is why students and executives tend to seek-out its beneficial effects.
The Effects of Adderall
When taking Adderall, users influence serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. This drug is commonly prescribed to those that suffer from ADHD, as it helps produce calming effects, so that an individual can focus on a task.
For those that do not suffer from ADHD, Adderall tends to have a stimulant effect, both physically and mentally. It has this effect on one’s brain chemistry due to the combination of four amphetamine and dextroamphetamine salts.
The Benefits of Modafinil and Adderall
When taking a supplement, you will be drawn to the positive benefits in which it provides. How can it improve your mental and/or physical state? Now that we have focused on the effects of these drugs, let’s examine the benefits associated with both drugs:
The Benefits of Modafinil
Although Modafinil is a stimulant, it does not work in the same way that Adderall does. When taking Modafinil, users experience a greater attention span and higher energy levels. For individual with ADHD, Modafinil has the ability to naturally enhance overall concentration and focus.
Users often describe Modafinil as a way to experience clarity. It allows users to think more clearly, in a natural and non-speedy way. With that being said, some users have compared Modafinil as being ‘Adderall-lite.’ Meaning, the stimulating effects are lower in comparison to Adderall. This may preferable to you, as you do not want to take an overly stimulating drug.
The Benefits of Adderall
In comparison to Modafinil, Adderall provides a highly stimulating effect. This is due to its influence on various neurotransmitters, increasing activity in both the peripheral and central nervous system. When prescribed for ADHD and narcolepsy, Adderall triggers an adrenaline release.
Blood flow begins to increase, reaching both the users muscles and heart. This enhanced blood flow, boosts energy, allowing users to focus more effectively. When taking Adderall, users also experience an enhanced mood. In fact, some users report a feeling of euphoria.
What Are the Potential Side-Effects?
When taking almost any drug, there’s the possibility of side-effects. The side-effects associated with smart drugs like Modafinil and Adderall are especially worrying. When ranking medications based on the risk of side-effects, health officials rank drugs based on mild, moderate, or serious in terms of its side-effects. When deciding whether or not a drug will be controlled and prescribed, addiction potential is taken into account.
Side-Effects of Modafinil
While taking Modafinil, it is possible that you’ll experience a number of side-effects. This can include headaches, nausea, anxiety, and nervousness. Although more serious side-effects are rare, they can occur. These include shaking, trembling, a skin rash, and uncontrollable movements.
Although side-effects are possible, Modafinil does not have an addiction potential, which is highly positive. This is unusual for a wakefulness agent. Based on this, Modafinil is considered to be much safer than other stimulants. Based on these findings, Modafinil is being looked at as a possible replacement for Adderall.
Side-Effects of Adderall
While taking Adderall, similar possible side-effects can occur. These include nausea, anxiety, headaches, restlessness, nervousness, and dizziness. More serious side-effects include seizures, chest pain, tics, and hallucinations. Adderall can also cause one’s blood pressure to rise, causing heart palpitations.
Since Adderall is habit forming, continuous use can create a dependency. There is also a concern that Adderall will increase one’s likelihood of abusing other substances, since it is an amphetamine. This is one of the key reasons that individual with ADHD seek alternative treatment methods.
Summary: Which Option Should You Choose?
Both of these prescription drugs are used to treat narcolepsy, as well as those who have been diagnosed with ADHD. They both can be used for their powerful cognitive enhancing properties, as there is a fair amount of off-label usage for both Modafinil and Adderall. Those that would like to boost productivity or their ability to focus, can most certainly benefit.
When treating ADD/ADHD patients, doctors typically have these individuals try either Adderall or Ritalin, before they are prescribed Modafinil. This is due to the fact that Adderall produces more potent effects. For those that have tried both, many describe Modafinil as having an extremely potent cup of coffee, while Adderall is far more stimulating (producing greater effects on one’s ability to focus).
Yes, the effects of Adderall are more potent. However, once the effects wear off, users often feel burnt out or on edge. This is why many recommend taking Modafinil on consecutive days, decreasing the degree of burnout. Energy and emotional crashes are also less common.
When comparing these two drugs, it’s important to remember that both can produce side-effects. If you are able to achieve the results you’re looking for, Modafinil tends to create less negative effects. You should only be taking these drugs under medical supervision, based on a medical professional’s recommendation. If you cannot obtain Modafinil, than Adrafinil is an alternative which does not require a prescription.
Modafinil is being recognized for its positive effects on mood. Originally, it was developed to treat sleep disorders such as narcolepsy and shift work disorder. However, Modafinil is now being prescribed for other conditions, such as anxiety disorders and depression. These off-label uses, are becoming more and more popular.
Modafinil was first developed in the 1970’s in France. It has been used within a clinical setting since the mid 1980’s. This medication is currently regulated by the FDA and is available through a prescription.
This drug is commonly known as Provigil within the United States, as the company Cephalon, bought the original rights. Since 2012, there have also been a number of generic versions available. Although there are multiple benefits, many are focusing in on the positive effects associated with depression and anxiety symptoms.
The Effects of Modafinil
Although there have been multiple studies conducted, the mechanisms of action are still unclear. With that being said, it is known that Modafinil increases the level of hypothalamic histamine. This chemical helps boost mental vigilance and wakefulness. The best part about these effects, is that it does not lead to central nervous system stimulation.
Since Modafinil does not produce the side-effects like common amphetamines, it is the preferred choice. Due to the lack of side-effects in comparison to stimulants, it is now being used to treat conditions that are associated with low levels of energy.
It is also known that Modafinil affects the dopamine system within the brain. Modafinil inhibits dopamine transporter enzymes, which results in an increased levels of dopamine. Since dopamine has a positive effect on mood, Modafinil can improve how users feel.
Basically, it helps increase levels of dopamine in areas that control mood and feeling of well-being. Unlike Adderall, Modafinil does not cause a dopamine spike, then crash. It’s an all around safer, yet still effective option.
How Does Modafinil Reduce Feelings of Anxiety?
As mentioned, Modafinil has a direct effect on dopamine levels. When this occurs, it’s believed to aid in feelings of anxiety. In some cases, it’s believed that Modafinil can also increase serotonin levels. Both of these neurotransmitters play a large role in how we feel in terms of our mood and confidence levels.
Since Modafinil increase energy levels, you’d think that it would not be an ideal choice for stress and anxiety. However, reports from various users, have explained that Modafinil can eliminate anxiety for an entire day, while boosting one’s ability to focus and feel motivated. When users take Modafinil, it appears to decrease the number and severity of panic attacks. This is because Modafinil decreases our brain’s susceptibility to over-excitement.
In terms of anxiety, Modafinil has been especially beneficial when targeting symptoms of social anxiety. If you suffer from social anxiety, you know how crippling it can be. In numerous studies, Modafinil was shown to promote sociability.
Modafinil is also useful when trying to reduce anxiety associated with a test or performance levels. If you become very nervous before interviews for example, this may benefit you. Do not use Modafinil for the first time before an interview, but if you’re already comfortable with your dose, then this could be beneficial.
When taking this supplement, users experience an increased level of focus. They’ve reported that their brain was able to function without being interrupted by various thoughts. Professionals take Modafinil to help them feel more relaxed in their environment. This is because it helps you disable negative thoughts in your brain, so that you’re able to focus on the task at hand.
What Other Benefits Does Modafinil Offer?
If you’re using Modafinil for one sole purpose, you will notice various other positive effects. The main benefit is the ability to stay awake, which was what it was originally developed for. It helps promote wakefulness, without feeling tired (even if you’re sleep deprived or suffer from a sleep disorder).
Individuals who suffer from narcolepsy, which causes them to fall asleep randomly, find relief from this treatment. They’re able to live more normal, balanced lives. The same is true for individuals that work shift work. They need to stay awake during the night, as well as adjust to shift changes.
There are also noted benefits regarding weight-loss. Due to its effects on appetite, Modafinil is believed to help individuals maintain a healthy weight. It has been found that when individuals consumed 200 mg of Modafinil a day, they decreased their calorie intake by 18%. When the dose was increased to 400 mg, calorie intake decreased by 38%.
There is also interest in Modafinil regarding cocaine addiction. The way in which Modafinil works, is the opposite regarding cocaine withdrawal. It’s believed that taking this supplement, may help counteract the effects and symptoms associated with cocaine withdrawal. Other individuals use Modafinil for their ADD and ADHD, as it does not create side-effects like Ritalin or Adderall do.
In order to produce the greatest effects regarding anxiety and mood, it is recommended that you take between 100 and 200 mg per day. This dose should generally be taken in the morning, with or without food. The benefits on anxiety and depression tend to last the entire day, even when users only take a single dose.
It is not recommended that you take Modafinil later in the day, as it can create difficulties when trying to sleep. If you do not get enough sleep, you could potentially worsen the symptoms associated with depression and anxiety. If you cannot find Modafinil, as it’s more tightly regulated, then Adrafinil is a great substitute. It is the legal, non-prescription alternative, which is converted to Modafinil in the liver.
What is Alertec 200mg?
This medication is the Canadian version of Provigil, which has been marketed by the company, ‘Shire Canada Inc.’ The 200mg, represents the Modafinil content per capsule. It is being prescribed to individuals that suffer from serious sleep issues. You can also obtain this drug in 100 mg doses.
The most common sleep conditions include, sleep apnea, shift work disorder, and narcolepsy. In fact, these conditions are the only issues officially approved for this drug. However, there are off-label uses for Alertec. Some doctors view Alertec as a great treatment for ADHD, while others prescribe it for anxiety.
Although it is prescribed for various conditions, many users also take this drug to increase cognitive function and mental performance. This is seen especially amongst the student population, as they try to improve their ability to study. With the assistance of this drug, they can stay awake all night studying. It is also commonly used to combat jet lag within the business world.
The effects are identical to Provigil’s Modafinil, making these two options indistinguishable. The main difference is seen within price. Alertec is cheaper to obtain. Some users in the United States are looking to order Alertec through their doctor for this reason.
How the Modafinil in Alertec works, is not entirely known. However, it is known that Modafinil influences histamine levels. Due to the area of the brain where this activity occurs, there is some correlation with the neurotransmitter dopamine.
Once the dopamine transport system is inhibited, dopamine concentrations increase. This is directly related to improved focus, higher motivation, and improved attention. Although this drug has stimulant-like effects, it works entirely different than other prescription drugs such as Ritalin and Adderall.
Stimulants such as Ritalin, create the potential risk of addiction and withdrawal. Alertec does not create these serious side-effects, as abuse is not a concern. GABA and Glutamate are also believed to play a role.
Benefits of Alertec
There are various benefits associated with Alertec:
- When users take Alertec, the main benefit is the ability to stay awake and alert. This is especially true for individuals that are sleep deprived. If you have a sleep condition or endure shift work, then Alertec will provide you with the energy and focus you need throughout the day.
- Alertec is believed to improve cognitive function. Clinical trials have shown improved motivation, memory, and reasoning. Due to an increase in brain function, mental performance tends to improve.
- ADHD patients are believed to benefit from Alertec, because it decreases impulse responses. Being highly impulsive and hyperactive, are core symptoms of ADHD. Alertec helps to control these symptoms. Positive effects have also been displayed for patients suffering from anxiety and depression.
There have been several studies conducted for Modafinil and its cognitive enhancing abilities. One study was conducted at the University of Cambridge. This 2003 study combined the Clinical Neuropsychology and Experimental Psychology departments.
When students were given a 200 mg dose of Modafinil, their ability to handle information was improved, along with their performance. It also appeared to improve short-term memory, the ability to process information, and make decisions.
Research is continually being conducted regarding the treatment of various ailments. Some of these conditions include; Alzheimer’s, depression, ADHD, cancer-associated fatigue, cognitive impairment in schizophrenia, and multiple sclerosis-induced fatigue.
Not everyone will experience side-effects, however some effects have been experienced. If you are concerned with the potential risks, speak to your doctor about alternatives or how this drug will benefit you.
The following side-effects have been experienced in 1% of the population taking this medication. Although majority of the side-effects are easily managed, you should contact your doctor if you are displaying some of the following symptoms; anxiety, vomiting, problems sleeping, headache, loss of appetite, increase heart rate, back pain, and nervousness.
Although uncommon, speak to your doctor if you show any signs of; a skin rash, depression, dizziness, liver issues (dark urine, abdominal pain, yellow eyes), or ongoing sleepiness. You should also immediately stop usage if you experience; chest pain, an allergic reaction, or a severe skin reaction.
Other Warnings and Precautions
Before you begin taking this drug, you need to speak with your doctor in terms of dosage. There are various factors that can affect the amount of medication you should take. Also be aware of these precautions:
- Grapefruit Juice: Grapefruit affects how Modafinil is removed from the human body, which may cause a build-up to occur. If you are taking this drug, avoid eating grapefruit or consuming grapefruit juice.
- Reduced Alertness: Some individuals will actually experience ongoing drowsiness while taking this drug. If it is causes dizziness or poor judgement, then speak with your doctor. Make sure you do not drive or operate any heavy machinery if this is the case.
- Heart and Liver Disease: It is unknown how this drug affects heart disease. There have been instances of chest pain and heart palpitations. In terms of the liver, lower doses should be taken if you suffer from a liver condition. As always, speak with your doctor regarding any special monitoring.
Depending on the reason, individuals take different doses for different conditions. If you are suffering from narcolepsy, it’s recommended that you take between 200 mg and 400 mg daily. Typically, you’ll start with a 200 mg dose and then work your way up.
Regarding sleep apnea, it is recommended that you take one single dose (200 mg) in the morning. The same dose is recommended for shift workers, but should be taken an hour before work begins.
Each individual differs, so if your doctor recommended a specific dose to you, stick to that recommended dose. Many factors can affect dosage, such as weight, conflicting conditions, and other medications.
Avoid taking this medication in the evening, as it could interfere with your sleep patterns. If you missed a dose, take it as soon as possible. However, if you’re close to your next required dose, skip the missed dosage and continue with your schedule. Do NOT double up on doses to compensate. If you miss a dose and are unsure of what to do, contact your doctor.
Background of Modafinil
Modafinil is an oral drug, used to treat patients who suffer from excessive sleepiness. By stimulating the brain, Modafinil promotes wakefulness. This is generally prescribed to individuals suffering from narcolepsy or obstructive sleep apnea.
It is commonly used in a stack, as it helps to improve the performance of individuals that are experiencing negative effects associated with fatigue. Although the method of action is not fully understood, it’s believed that the amount of dopamine is increased. It is also believed to increase serotonin, histamine, and glutamate release.
What Are the Benefits of Modafinil?
There are multiple benefits associated with Modafinil use including:
- Helps individuals stay awake and alert if they’re sleep deprived. When you experience sleep deprivation, your memory worsens and you lack mental clarity. When Modafinil is taken, cognitive function improves despite a lack of sleep.
- It has shown improved symptoms in children with ADHD/ADD
- It helps to improve focus, short-term memory, and concentration. This makes users more productive.
Why Would You Want an Alternative to Modafinil?
Although Modafinil is highly effective and beneficial, you need a prescription to use it. Unless you have a need for it, you probably will not get a prescription. This has left many users looking for alternatives that they can buy over-the-counter or online.
It is not only accessibility that is an issue, as the cost for Modafinil is fairly high. To buy thirty 100 mg tablets, you could pay anywhere from $800 to $1500. Not many people can absorb this cost, which is why they’re looking for alternatives.
Alternatives to Modafinil
If you like what Modafinil offers, but cannot afford or gain access to it, look into some of the following alternatives. If you’re looking strictly for the effects of Modafinil, then Adrafinil is your best option. If you’re also looking for other benefits, such as improved mood or memory, then you may want to explore some other options:
Adrafinil is the one of the top choices if you’re seeking Modafinil. Once you ingest Adrafinil, it is converted into Modafinil within the liver. This is as close as you’ll get without actually taking Modafinil.
You can buy this supplement in the United States without the need for a prescription. It is much more cost effective, as a single dose can cost as little as fifty cents when bought in bulk. Although the effects are identical, Adrafinil takes an hour longer to take effect.
This supplement is fairly similar to Modafinil in terms of its benefits, yet some say it is slightly weaker. Use take Adrafinil when they need to be more alert. You can legally buy this alternative in the United States, Canada, and most of Europe without needed a prescription.
This supplement is derived from Piracetam, but is much more potent. It helps to increase both focus and energy levels. Due to increased levels of dopamine, users experience improved motivation. Due to the influence on acetylcholine receptors, Phenylpiracetam also improves working memory.
This is a great supplement to use as an alternative, as it also works to enhance mood. This supplement is an engineered form of thiamine (vitamin B1). Thiamine is essential for energy metabolism in the brain.
When users take Sulbutiamine, they boost mental energy levels. It produces a stimulant-like effect, without the associated side-effects. It is linked to positive brain health, as it protects nerves. Sulbutiamine also targets memory. When taken, it has been shown to reduce the symptoms associated with cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s.
Natural Alternatives to Modafinil
If you’re looking for a more natural approach, there are other alternatives that you may like to try. Like always, you should consult your doctor about any alternative discussed.
There are no cures regarding sleep disorders, however you can help control them. Caffeine does not eliminate narcolepsy for instance, but it has been incorporated into treatment. When you consume caffeine, it helps to combat fatigue.
You should not take excessive amounts of caffeine, as this can cause anxiety and insomnia. When caffeine is taken in a stack with L-theanine, these side-effects are dramatically reduced. Users feel more mentally alert and aware, while reducing feelings of anxiety.
This is used by Asian herbalists, as it’s a herbal stimulant. It combats feelings of mental fuzziness, which is often experienced by those that are sleep deprived. It helps increase levels of choline, influencing heightened brain function.
This subshurb is native to India and has helped many regarding a number of ailments. It has been highly effective for those that have endured a stroke, but it is also a psychostimulant. Country mallow contains ephedrine, which is the stimulating compound. In order to target drowsiness, you can brew a country mallow tea. For each cup of boiling water, add 5 tsp of this herb.