Modafinil is the exemplar product to come out the recent fascination with nootropics or ‘smart drugs’.
But is there any real, hard evidence that Modafinil or any of these new fangled drugs increase the users’ intelligence at all?
Well, the answer is not really, there is some evidence to show that Modafinil increases cognitive performance in short-term memory and pattern recognition, but nothing like the Hollywood ideal of swallowing a pill and becoming Einstein, think – Limitless.
However there have been strong, statistically significant correlations between use of the drug and an increase in focus and awareness.
Modafinil was designed as a eugeroic (wakefulness-promoting agent) to treat narcolepsy and shift-work disorder, it is not exactly a run-of-the-mill stimulant, which explains why it belongs in a grey area of controlled substances.
Modafinil is better known for its off-label use as a cognitive enhancement tool by ‘biohackers’.
Anecdotal evidence claims that Modafinil allows the user to focus on one topic for hours without interruption, perfect for smashing out that last-minute assignment, which is why is has become so popular with university students (and professors).
Is it legal?
Well legally you may be in warm water if found to be in possession of Modafinil, but it’s unlikely you’ll be shipped off to jail.
For countries where the drug is available it is a scheduled substance, the level of control for most of these nations it as a prescription medication.
So how do you get it?
Modafinil is available online with worldwide shipping at various outlets, however if the parcel is seized at customs you can expect it to be confiscated, though it is unlikely that intelligence services will come knocking on your door.
Is it dangerous?
There are very few serious side effects associated with Modafinil use, though you can expect some dizziness, nausea, light-headedness and difficulty sleeping.
There incidences of users of Modafinil developing Stevens-Johnson syndrome, a painful and severe skin reaction, however reports are rare.
Modafinil users have received a lot of criticism because they are seen as ‘cheaters’ by their colleagues, but instead of viewing Modafinil as a performance enhancing drug, it may be better to view it as a key to unlocking your personal, cognitive potential.