What is Modafinil?

Modafinil is a medication used for its wakefulness-enhancing effects by people with narcolepsy, obstructive sleep apnea or shift work sleep disorder. While many people choose to buy Modafinil online, it is also available in most Western countries as a prescription medication.

The conditions mentioned above are its official medical uses as a treatment. Modafinil also has a plethora of other off-label uses. Although people commonly take Modafinil to manage excessive sleepiness associated with sleep disorders, it has other uses that have been extensively studied throughout the years.

Modafinil comes in 100mg — 200mg tablets. It is a controlled substance, more specifically categorized as a Schedule IV prescription drug, which means that its manufacture, processing, and sale are strictly monitored by the government because it has the potential for abuse and addiction. Oftentimes, Modafinil is regarded as a ‘smart drug’, which students resort to in time of need to study more effectively and obtain better results in exams. Online pharmacies (DrModafinil, for example) sell generic Modafinil online, as there are some countries where people can buy Modafinil without requiring a prescription. One such country is the UK, as they allow people the right to buy Modafinil online, as long as it’s for personal use.

A poll that was conducted on students in the UK has revealed that 1 in 4 students has used cognitive enhancers at least once, and Modafinil has always been the first choice. Furthermore, a poll conducted on Nature journal readers suggested that one in five have used drugs to improve focus, with 44% stating modafinil as their drug of choice.

Off-label uses of Modafinil

Modafinil is also known for its off label uses which pertain to any purpose not cleared by FDA approval. While you may think of off-label use as exclusively non-medical, that is not the case with Modafinil. People are taking Modafinil and doctors are prescribing it as an unofficial treatment because it is safe and highly effective.

Some off-label uses of Modafinil are widely known, whereas others may come as a surprise to you:

1. Studying

In recent years, education has become more tedious and time-consuming. Students have resorted to something called ‘smart drugs’ which enable them to enhance focus and retain information for longer periods of time.

Modafinil is popular when it comes to study enhancement because it can:

● Reduce fatigue

● Improve vigilance

● Increase memory retention

● Improve focus

Beware that you need to get at least 8–9 hours of sleep, as Modafinil can not be used as a replacement for proper rest. A study showed that Modafinil enhances centrality, which is an assessment of the functional network nodes of the primary visual cortex. Subjects consuming Modafinil showed heightened functional relatedness between the primary visual cortex and frontal and cerebellar regions.

published systematic review confers that Modafinil intensifies cognition according to a co-author of this research at Oxford University, Ruairidh Battleday. It also concluded that it had very mild side effects compared to its counterparts.

2. Productivity

When it comes to being productive, Modafinil tops the list throughout student campuses and Silicon Valley tech hubs alike. By increasing wakefulness, it improves focus, as well as the ability to concentrate for longer spans of time. And so you end up retaining more information without feeling tired or drowsy. Memory retention, as well as an increase in on-the-spot problem solving helps professionals save countless work hours that can be used more productively.

Modafinil also helps in clearing away brain fog and amping up reaction times. A study conducted in 2012 concluded that modafinil enhanced performance on cognition tests. Contestants worked more swiftly while doing work that involved memory and planning.

3. Increased performance

Sports enthusiasts are keen to dose up on Modafinil because of its improvement of reaction times, concentration and endurance. Their neural chemistry is more swift which gives them an edge over other contestants. Body-builders perform better and excel more than their counterparts due to increased weight-lifting abilities, as well as better stamina for cardio exercises.

4. Public speaking

When it comes to facing a large audience, we all get jitters. Some people experience worse anxiety attacks than others. Modafinil helps by keeping the tension streak under control. It calms your nerves and makes you more receptive to the lecture or speech you are going to deliver. Anna-Katharine Brem, a neuropsychologist at Oxford claimed that the more difficult the task, the better modafinil worked to provide cognitive benefits.

5. Attention deficit hyperactive disorder

Modafinil has been found to be just as effective in treating the symptoms of ADHD than popular stimulants like Ritalin or Adderall. Also, it is far safer, with fewer side effects and low addictive potential. For this reason, doctors prescribe Modafinil off-label as a treatment for ADHD. Its mechanism of action make it quite gentle with regards to neurotransmitter modulation.

6. Depression

Of course, Modafinil is by no means an antidepressant. Studies show that Modafinil is effective in treating depression from a somewhat different point of view. Depression causes memory problems, difficulty concentrating and brain fog. This can make it hard for a depressed individual to revert back to normal life, and can even lead to job loss or relapse. Modafinil can help depressed people by helping them focus and maintain proper cognitive function through difficult times.

How does Modafinil work?

Modafinil acts invariably by working on different neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine, glutamate, orexin, and GABA. It acts on areas of the brain which increase wakefulness and alertness. It has also been seen to reduce fatigue which in turn keeps you active for longer.


It is said that modafinil increases the secretion and decreases uptake of dopamine by inhibiting the dopamine transporter(DAT).

study was conducted that concluded this theory that modafinil increases motivation by inhibition of the DAT.

Some studies presume that modafinil triggers D2 receptors which secrete dopamine all throughout the day.


It is believed that serotonin increases in specific areas of the brain such as the amygdala, prefrontal cortex and dorsal raphe nucleus due to modafinil intake.

It is also presumed that modafinil works in coherence with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors in a way that amplifies its effect.

In an in-vitro study, modafinil enhanced serotonin discharge from cortical areas in a way that was dependent on the concentration.

This outcome establishes that modafinil determines the cortical serotonin transportation and the fact that it works by intensifying the electrical neurosecretory pairing phenomenon and through mechanisms that do not include the reuptake system.


Modafinil has also been observed to relate with Norepinephrine transporters (NET) to increase the quantity of norepinephrine in different areas of the brain such as the prefrontal cortex and hypothalamus.

It was seen in a particular study that modafinil amplified vigilance by regulating the NET activity as shown by the tomography imaging in vivo.

Glutamate and GABA

The stimulant drug in question impedes the GABA neuron activity in the cerebral mantle and in the nucleus accumbens alongside the medial preoptic area and posterior part of the hypothalamus. This particular study demonstrated the outcome of modafinil on GABA in the ventrolateral and ventromedial thalamus and hippocampus of a rat. The final outcome shows a marked increase in the release of glutamate in these areas at a dosage of about 100mg/kg but a minimal effect on GABA. Hence it is safe to say that modafinil alternates the balance between glutamate and GABA transportation.


Modafinil is seen as a drug for inducing vigilance rather than it’s the curative mechanism. It has been used in cases of attention loss, depression, and mental lethargy. The orexinergic system is one that negotiates the vigilance enhancing characteristic of modafinil, as stated in a study.

Modafinil makes use of the symbiotic effect of the orexinergic mechanism and controls energy use.

How to take Modafinil

The best time to take Modafinil is early in the day, so that you can easily go to sleep at night.

The ideal dose of Modafinil is somewhere between 100mg — 200mg. Doses above 300mg will not lead to extra benefits. In fact, it may lead to the user experiencing side effects such as headaches or agitation.

The effects of Modafinil start within 20–30 minues and the “peak” lasts well over 6 hours. After that, effects gradually decrease and one does not experience a crash.

Side Effects

Even though Modafinil is regarded as the “world’s first safe smart drug”, it does feature some side effects as well. Still, you do not have to worry about it being extremely harmful as it is approved by the FDA, and it is considered a safe drug. Nevertheless, here are some of its side effects that you need to keep in mind:

● Headaches and nausea are common among people who use Modafinil irresponsibly. That means taking Modafinil on an empty stomach, not drinking enough water, or mixing it with other psychoactive substances.

● Dry mouth is common, which is why users are advised to drink more water than they usually do.

● You might have difficulties sleeping, especially if you take Modafinil late in the afternoon. Modafinil does a great job at preventing the user from sleeping by increasing key excitatory neurotransmitters responsible for the sleep-wake cycle.

● You might feel more anxious than usual due to its modulation of norepinephrine, the “fight-or-flight” hormone.

Some of the more extreme but rare side effects include:

● Irregular heartbeat; chest pain or back pain.

● There can be hallucinations and severe depression.

● Confusion and agitation.

If you feel any of these extreme side effects, you must tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible.

Also, don’t forget that a doctor of medicine is the only one who can give you legitimate advice on anything related to Modafinil. This is a mere review that should act as entertainment that you use to better communicate with your doctor.

Buy Modafinil online or get a prescription for Modafinil?

Well, in an ideal world, anybody can talk to their doctor and they can provide them with the means to get out of depression, treat ADHD or perform better at work to lead a happier, more fulfilled life. Unfortunately, that’s clearly not the case.

The main brand that doctors prescribe is Provigil. Modafinil online is sold as Modalert, Modvigil and Vilafinil. Provigil is 30 US Dollars… yes, you’ve heard right (if you didn’t already know). Online Modafinil generics that are manufactured in India, on the other hand, are available at $0.90 — $2.5. They are just as effective as Provigil, and Modalert is actually approved by the FDA in the US.

You can get a prescription for Modafinil, but if you’re not a wealthy person who can afford paying that sort of money, then there’s little you can do with it except buying Modafinil online.

Final thoughts

To sum it all up, modafinil is a versatile drug that acts in a variety of ways to induce wakefulness in an individual which then fuels his/her performance. However, certain researchers believe that modafinil still needs more in-depth to understand how it actually works and affects our brain.

Would you consider using Modafinil to incite your work ethic or not? Do you think it can pace up your work and make you more efficient? Do you agree with its sale as an off label substance?

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