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Modafinil and Armodafinil are two smart drugs that have a close relationship and are used in increasing energy levels while helping people in improving focus and alertness.
Modafinil, also referred to as Provigil was developed by Lafon (Cephalon) which is from France and it was first given as a prescription in 1994 for the treatment of narcolepsy.
Armodafinil, which is also referred to as Nuvigil was what Cephalon manufactured after Modafinil and people began using this in the year 2007. It is an enantiomer of Modafinil meaning that its chemical structure is modified which translates to more potential.
The two drugs give different effects in different dosages that are available. You might, therefore, wonder which between the two is a better Nootropic for you? Armodafinil or Modafinil?
Clinically, they are both used to treat similar conditions and they both produce spectacular results. As for Armodafinil, it is required in smaller dosages though some individuals may still prefer the effects produced by Modafinil.
Questioning which is better takes away the essence that each drug brings about different reactions for different persons. With this, it is easier to say that potency is not the issue here but experiences that people get from the drugs.
To ensure each is judged fairly, we would need to outline the benefits of each, differences, side effects and mechanisms of action.
The History of Modafinil and Armodafinil
Armodafinil is among the latest developments in a series of related compounds developed since the 70’s when Adrafinil was invented. Michel Jouvet along with another scientist was working on a research on new Analgesics at Lafon in France in 1994.
They worked on compounds such as benzhydryl sulfinyl and this included Adrafinil. They found out that Adrafinil did not have pain-relieving effects but could be categorized as a eugeroic, which means it did promote alertness.
It was discovered to have stimulant-like effects but had no chemical relation to standard amphetamine-related stimulants and also it did not have a similar mechanism of action.
While they were testing the mechanism of action of Adrafinil, they discovered Modafinil. The liver metabolizes Adrafinil into an inactive state of modafinilic acid and active modafinil. With this, it is right to say that it is a prodrug due to its inactive form broke down and acts as an active metabolite-Modafinil.
Tests conducted on animals indicate that Adrafinil and Modafinil have stimulating effects which caused an increase in alertness, wakefulness and locomotive activity. These effects led to human trials for the treatment of narcolepsy which is a sleep disorder.
In different clinical trials, they were both confirmed to help in reduction of sleepiness during the day and they helped with alertness in narcolepsy compared to using a placebo.
France gave the approval of the use of Adrafinil in 1986 for narcolepsy and in 1994 they did the same for modafinil, the US approved the same in 1998. From this time, modafinil has been approved for treatment of various disorders associated with sleep which include shift-work sleep disorder as well as obstructive sleep apnea/hypopnea syndrome.
Cephalon Inc an American pharmaceutical purchased Lafon Laboratories. They kept working on Adrafinil and Modafinil as Olmifon and Provigil respectively.
Years before exclusive patents expired on Provigil, they decided to work on a new brand so that they could maintain their market share, they came up with Armodafinil an improvement form modafinil with the brand name of Nuvigil.
Teva Pharmaceuticals acquired Cephalon in 2011 though Cephalon continued manufacturing Provigil and Nuvigil up to date. Olmifon is no longer manufactured though generic Adrafinil can be found from different manufacturers.
Armodafinil vs Modafinil
Their chemical structure is what differentiates them. Armodafinil is an enantiopure version of Modafinil.
Modafinil is made up of two mirror-image stereoisomers with similar molecular structure-enantiomers. They are identical in every aspect and are R-Modafinil and S-Modafinil.
The R-enantiomer has been proven though to be more pharmacologically active with stability and a longer-acting isomer.
In this case, Cephalon personnel created the active R-Modafinil. and thus the name Armodafinil from R-Modafinil.
With just the right enantiomer, Armodafinil becomes a purified version of Modafinil. This makes it bind in a different manner to receptors within the brain and the body as compared to its predecessors. You may need to take a dose of 200mg of Modafinil but with Armodafinil you will need only 150 mg of Armodafinil for the same results.
Their differences are subjective as this is dependent on persons taking them and their reactions. A couple of reviews have even suggested that Modafinil is better at mood enhancement, and it helps with positivity and confidence.
The same reviews indicate that Armodafinil can cause anxiety, stress and even nervousness than its previous form. People have reported that it actually makes them feel more aggressive which is true for Modafinil users too.
People have found that the best way to determine which to use is by having doctors prescribe the two so they can make the comparison by themselves.
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- Energy elevation, improving on wakefulness and motivation.
- Helps in boosting of mental performance while increasing on focus.
- It helps in supporting your memory and cognition
For those with sleep disorders such as narcolepsy, Modafinil proved to be the very first medication to provide them with relief.
It helps to make your sleeping patterns more regular allowing you to be awake and work on your daily activities without feeling fatigued.
People have also used this to increase energy levels and the ability to remain awake. Users have reported that after taking Modafinil they experienced an increase in focus and productivity.
Such focus provokes fluidity of thought ensuring that simple tasks can be accomplished without a hustle. Your memory receives a major boost and your retention of things gets better.
Added advantages include better sensory perceptions and suppression of appetite for those looking to lose weight.
The benefits are by and large so similar to those associated with Modafinil. It is easy to notice the effect it brings with staying awake which is the same as having caffeine. the only difference is that there is no nervousness and you do not increase or decrease the pulse rate
It also has been confirmed to be safer with close to zero addiction potential Modafinil has a higher potential for side effects and tolerance.
Armodafinil, unlike Modafinil, does not interfere with your current sleeping patterns. This means you can still sleep without interference and wake up as usual.
People have reported that after using Modafinil, it took them about 5-10 hours before they could sleep which is not the case for Armodafinil. Some people see this in a positive light while others do not especially if they wanted to stay awake.
Armodafinil for Focus and Jet Lag
It helps improve on your focus though not as strong as the previous drug. This cuts it out for continuous use as compared to Modafinil which you only need to uses once in a while.
It has also been found to have potential in helping people who suffer from jet lags.
Though the drug has only been in the market for just a few years, 2 million prescriptions and above have been sold to people from all walks of life such as students and athletes.
Tolerance should also be considered. People who have taken the drugs for long periods of time have noted that there might be no immediate effects while others reported that tolerance can build quicker than expected.
Modafinil has been more associated with tolerance as compared to Armodafinil. It can be beaten by the use of Modafinil once in a while. You could also try interchanging between Modafinil and Armodafinil though by consulting a professional.
Side Effects of Modafinil and Armodafinil
Their side effects are a bit different depending on what you are using though mild side effects are similar to a point for the two drugs. Common side effects associated with both include: headaches
- anxiety or nervousness
- appetite and/or weight loss
Mild side effects can be a thing when you are starting out on a dosage, it is important to check with your doctor if this overflow to 2nd-3rd week.
Insomnia is associated with both drugs but this is mostly caused when people do not take the drugs at the right time.
They both have longer half-lives and it is recommended that you take them early in the morning to avoid interfering with sleep patterns as their effects take longer to shake off.
It is not common but it is reported that people can develop reactions such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis. It has also been reported that people who have a genetic predisposition can easily develop such conditions when they use drugs such as Armodafinil or Modafinil.
You should halt their usage if you experience symptoms such as fever, rashes, and blisters.
Buying Armodafinil and Modafinil
It is important to consider if you can even buy the two for your use. in most countries, they are both categorized as prescription only.
In the US, the FDA has categorized this as schedule IV prescription medication, this means you can legally use them but with a doctor’s prescription. This is also the case for Canada, the UK, and Australia.
They are both prescribed for sleep disorders such as narcolepsy and shift work sleep disorder. The two are rarely given without a prescription for conditions such as ADHD, but such instances are not so common.
Doctors are not comfortable administering the two off-label especially if not for a given condition for fear of medical boards.
They are both costly and this means you need to factor in this. If you need to take this off-label, remember it is not covered by insurance packages.
For these reasons, users prefer buying the two from online sites ( modafinilcat )and international pharmacies who do sell off-label. It is not recommended though to buy here for a few reasons.
It is easy to actually lose your package if customs do not get documentation of your prescription. You are also culpable of facing legal charges and put on drug enforcement agency’s watch list though this is not common.
It is also not a surety of the authenticity and safety of the said drugs. With no set standards for manufacturing.
There is also a likelihood that products are not placed under inspection and if this is done, not only every batch manufactured.
Since many people cannot get a prescription of the two drugs and do not want to lose money and risk their health, they choose to use off-label Nootropics alternatives such as Adrafinil or other Racetams as seen below.
Other Nootropic Options
A commonly used alternative for Armodafinil and Modafinil is Adrafinil which is a prodrug of Modafinil ingested and metabolized in the liver.
This initial conversion indicates that effects take much more time and after this is done, they have reported experiencing similar effects to those of Adrafinil and this is experienced for Modafinil too.
Most countries have allowed Adrafinil to go as unscheduled and unregulated and legally used without a prescription which includes the US, UK, and Canada. It can be bought online and is availed in capsule and powder form.
Other nootropics used commonly include Racetams a family of compounds related to Piracetam the original nootropic developed in the 60s.
Piracetam has been researched and noted to have effects on the neurotransmitter Acetylcholine in the central nervous system and brain. Acetylcholine directly affects executive function, your ability to learn, memory formation, recalling and even retaining this.
Piracetam has many other derivatives which include Oxiracetam, Aniracetam, Pramiracetam, and Phenylpiracetam, with more potency than Piracetam. Pramiracetam actually is more than 40-50 times powerful when compared in terms of mg, its mental effects can actually last for close to 8 hours.
Racetams can e found in powder and capsule form. You should research more on what works for you.
Just as Adrafinil, Racetams are majorly unregulated in most countries. FDA rules governing their distribution and sale are so tight making it difficult to sell them. Online vendors, however, restock them.
If you cannot get a prescription of Armodafinil and Modafinil, you can consider these alternatives so that you save yourself from losing money and your own health when buying online.