Modafinil, like amphetamines, increases alertness by activating the brain. Modafinil's precise method of action is uncertain. It may act by raising the quantity of dopamine (a chemical neurotransmitter used by neurons to communicate with one another) in the brain while decreasing dopamine reuptake into nerves. Alternatively, it may work by inhibiting serotonin receptors or enhancing norepinephrine activity.
Modafinil has various effects on the body and mind, including increased reaction time, enhanced memory, decreased need for sleep, and relief from anxiety and depression. It also appears to prevent the development of tolerance to the effects of caffeine.
Modafinil was first developed as a treatment for narcolepsy. However, studies have shown it to be effective for other conditions associated with excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), such as shift work syndrome, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), Alzheimer's disease, and traumatic brain injury (TBI).
It is now prescribed for people who struggle to stay awake during the day while working at computers, driving vehicles, or handling other tasks that require mental alertness.
Modafinil has been shown to be effective for individuals who suffer from chronic insomnia by allowing them to function without experiencing the negative effects of sleeping too much or not enough.
Modafinil boosts memory as well as one's mood, alertness, and cognitive abilities. The substance has a smoother feel than amphetamines and allows the user to stay awake and attentive for at least 40 hours. After the medicine wears off, all you have to do is catch up on your sleep. Modafinil is known to be effective in treating excessive daytime sleepiness associated with narcolepsy or idiopathic hypersomnia.
Modafinil has various effects on people, depending upon their body type, dosage, etc. ; but by far the most common effect of modafinil is its ability to keep someone alert and wide awake for an unusually long period. Some suggest that it's possible to stay awake for two days or more when using the drug, but this is likely not advisable without close supervision from health care professionals.
It all began in France in 1994, when neurophysiologist Michel Jouvet and his team made a stunning discovery: Normal lab rats given two consecutive daily doses of 200 milligrams of Modiodal, which is still the most common treatment today, experienced significant, durable improvements in their ability to solve complex mazes.
They didn't sleep more or better, but they remembered what they learned much better. Modafinil even proved to enhance the performance of healthy mice and primates on other cognitive tests--in some cases, outperforming well-rested animals.
Modafinil is used to treat narcolepsy (a disease that causes excessive daytime drowsiness) and shift work sleep disruption (sleepiness during scheduled waking hours and difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep during scheduled sleeping hours in people who work at night or on rotating shifts). It may also be used to treat problems with concentration, memory, and focus associated with disorders such as ADHD (attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder), dementia, and multiple sclerosis.
In addition to its use as a treatment for disorders that cause people to feel tired all the time, modafinil has been shown to improve the ability of people who are healthy but suffer from acute or chronic deficiencies in energy to stay alert and perform tasks that require large amounts of brain power. Modafinil has also been suggested as a potential drug-free alternative for people who need to stay awake under certain circumstances (such as while driving a car or operating machinery) by preventing them from feeling sleepy.
How does modafinil work? Scientists don't know for sure, but they think it may help prevent neurons from dying after injury and may also have effects similar to drugs called acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, which have been shown to be effective in treating Alzheimer's disease.
Scientists do know that modafinil increases the amount of dopamine available in the brain's pleasure center by blocking an enzyme needed to break down dopamine.