Originally synthesized in France in the 1970s, Modafinil was approved by the FDA as a treatment for narcolepsy and other sleep disorders in 1998. More recently, healthy people have started using the drug to stay awake for long periods and improve cognitive performance. Drugs such as Adderall, Ritalin – originally prescribed for patients with ADD – and the ampaquins – for Alzheimer’s – are being used in order to improve brain functions for study or work. These remedies are known as smart drugs. Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects
I decided to try Modafinil to see how it would affect my work. I researched the side effects and, after making sure I was not going to fall dead soon after taking the drug.
Modafinil has been approved in the US as a treatment for narcolepsy and other sleep disorders. Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects
Arriving at work at 9 am, I began to find it funny that no one there knew that I had taken a drug used by pilots, emergency physicians, and Silicon Valley millionaires. They take the drug for the same reason: to kick their butt off their concentration. After a few hours sitting at my desk, I began to get impatient. Was something going to happen? Around 11:30, I noticed that I had not taken a break for the cigarette yet. I had a pack with me and I saw some colleagues outside smoking, but because of the pill, I did not feel like it.
The thud came near noon. I was looking forward to working and got some extra tasks that my publisher wanted completed. The next hour I was completely absorbed in it. I was so focused on work that I did not even care to have lunch when a colleague asked if I wanted pizza, which is very unusual for me. (Even so, I asked for one.) Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects
The truth is, nobody knows how this drug works. It may seem absurd, especially considering that it is possible to buy it at any pharmacy in Colombia, although, in the end, we do not know how anesthesia works either – and that does not stop anyone from using it. Some say modafinil stimulates the brain to release a hormone called histamine. You’ve probably heard of antihistamine, a compound that inhibits the production of histamine found in those allergy medicines that make you sleepy. So it makes sense: by increasing the production of histamine, modafinil has the opposite effect: it leaves you awake.
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However, other studies suggest modafinil may affect the brain in ways similar to amphetamines and cocaine. This would increase the levels of dopamine – the hormone in your released brain when you eat, have sex, or meet a friend. If this theory is true, it means that modafinil can lead to abuse and addiction. Due to the lack of long-term research, no one has yet been able to prove it.
Back in the office, it took more than 45 minutes for the delivery boy to get the pizza ordered by my colleague Camila, but I did not care. Thinking about pepperoni was probably making her brain flood with dopamine, but mine had already received a good dose in the shape of the colored pill. A few days later, I asked Camila if I was acting normally during that lunch. Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects
“You were fine,” she replied.
After I ate my pizza, I did not take the classic back in the block to do the digestion, I did not go to get a dessert to cut the pepperoni salt, I did not even leave for my sacred cigarette after lunch. I went straight back to my desk to finish my work. When my editor returned to his desk, I was finished. “Already?” My boss asked with wide eyes. I shrugged, as if it were completely normal to finish my work before the deadline.
Apart from the effects – and side effects – of modafinil, there is an interesting debate about medicines that improve cognitive performance. Was using that pill unfair to my colleagues? According to an article published by the Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal, the use of medication to improve cognitive performance is considered ethically acceptable as long as it does not put someone else’s work at risk. Last year, Australian Treasury officials admitted (anonymously) using the drug to help complete the country’s budget on time. Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects
The debate surrounding drugs like this is full of gray areas. Of course, as a site editor, if I took these pills daily, I would probably be able to produce more articles per week. This would not necessarily affect the work of other reporters, but would increase the pressure for them to improve their productivity. Especially if I never mention that you were taking the pill. Having said that, I could argue that I am free to take any medication, as this is part of my private life. In addition, unlike me, many of my colleagues consume energy drinks all day. According to teachers Mirko Garasic and Andrea Lavazza, if you choose to take these medicines, the most ethical thing to do is tell your co-workers and bosses. You might just not take them, although this may seem rather unrealistic.
According to Vince Cakic, a professor of psychology at the University of Sydney, we should learn something by seeing how difficult it has been to control doping in sports. He urges academics to start focusing on drug research and informing people about side effects rather than simply declaring war on them. My strangely productive day began to fall apart when I drank a cup of coffee. Almost immediately, my heart sped up and I began to feel a pressure on my chest. The mental effects were even more disturbing. I started getting extremely annoyed when my colleagues asked for a synonym, sent me a video or showed me a meme. A casual conversation between the tables, something I usually like to do, seemed offensive-not against me, but worse, against my work. I wondered why they could not take a lot of drugs as well. It came to my head that the table I shared with six other colleagues was not a healthy work environment, and I decided to go to the library at Pontificia Universidad Javeriana. On the way, the tire of my bicycle stuck; so I was forced to make a detour and stop at the nearest coach. The process of repairing a tire had never been so irritatingly slow. Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects
When the guy ran out, I ran to college as if my life depended on it. Just before I got into the library-and many hours later than usual- I smoked my first cigarette of the day. My heart, the only thing in the universe that seemed capable of following my newly discovered rhythm, began to accelerate again. I sat in front of a computer in a quiet, dark room-and, I do not know how, I typed in my wrong password several times. I was sweaty and my hands were shaking; however, as soon as I saw my work screen open, it filled me with the same satisfaction I feel when I complete a task. According to Scott Vrecko, a medical sociologist, smart drugs do not increase the ability to receive, remember, and process information – they have a positive effect on the mood while the person performs these tasks. Vrecko spent a few weeks at a North American university collecting testimonials from students who took Adderall, and many said the pill made them feel more capable of accomplishing a task – even before they started. Another study points out that modafinil may induce an excessive state of trust. My second task of the day was to transfer mapping data about burglaries in Bogotá (by time and location) from a PDF file to a table in Excel. This is the kind of mechanical task that usually makes me – for being a distracted person – fall on Facebook. But this time it was different. Entering numbers became the highlight of my day, and I felt better as I inserted the numbers on the chart. A little later, I stopped sweating and the tremors disappeared. I’m not going to lie: I joined Facebook a few times, but when I did, something inside me persuaded me to go back to the task.
The pill works, no doubt. But at what cost? Doctors Kimberly Urban and Wen-Jun Gao are worried that we may see long-term damage in individuals under the age of 30 who use these substances. Apparently modafinil can fuck with something called neuroplasticity, a term for the brain’s ability to adapt to different situations and contexts over time. What worries doctors are the effects that increasing the amount of dopamine in a developing brain can Tue. Modafinil and other smart drugs can affect brain receptors that consolidate short-term memory and regulate brain flexibility when it comes to responding to diverse stimuli – such as social interactions. Researchers suspect that, in the long term, young people taking modafinil-and similar medicines-may end up with a greater ability to concentrate for long periods, even though their short-term memory may decrease. Which would lead to disadvantages in social situations or to tasks that require cognitive flexibility – such as being a journalist or driving. However, the research of Urban and Gao is full of speculations, hypotheses not yet proven: as in all studies on modafinil, lack long-term studies. One day after my initial experiment, I decided to take another pill. The effects were basically the same: pleasure and well-being in the library. Sweating on the outside. Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects
THE I decided not to buy another bottle of water in the cafeteria because I could not stand the queue. I had another problem with my bike: this time I left it behind and walked to the university. I usually love to walk; however, because of the drug, this seemed like a complete waste of time. Coming home after a long day, turning on the lights, smoking a joint and watching some series did not give me half the pleasure I usually feel. Modafinil is the least entertaining drug out there (at least, those I’ve ever tried) ; however, in the modern life, it is the only one that makes sense. Strange, right? The same young people who have enthusiastically received drugs like ecstasy are now taking things like modafinil – which ironically only make you love work. Modafinil uk, modafinil sideeffects