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Is Provigil able to replace sleep?

Preparations against sleepiness can do more harm than good.

Drugs used to suppress sleepiness can do more harm than good, warn scientists from the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health in Helsinki. These drugs are very often taken by the people who work on shifts. In most developed countries, at least 10% of the labor force are involved in some form of shift work. Violations of the quality of sleep increase the risk of accidents and negatively affect the health of shift workers. Therefore it is very important to avoid shift work, where it is possible, and to improve its graphics in order to help people to fully relax, report the scientists.

Finnish experts have analyzed 5 studies in which people had to fight sleepiness taking Provigil, Armodafinil and caffeine. In all tests provided drugs and caffeine helped shift workers to fight fatigue and sleepiness, but Provigil and Armodafinil also caused headache, nausea and high blood pressure which had a significant number of people. Despite the fact that the shift workers experienced some benefit from their usage, experts do not recommend using them for a long time.

About the studies in the field of sleep.

According to the National Sleep Foundation (USA), 71% of Americans sleep 8 hours and even less, and there is a growing percentage of Americans every year. "We are a society deprived of sleep," - said Russell Foster, the scientist from Oxford (UK), who studies circadian cycle and human activity. But a new generation of drugs aimed at a permanent "wakefulness", and still with no side effects, is designed to deprive the people also those hours of sleep that they have deserved.

US Department of Defense, for research and development of new protective measures, carried out experiments on the drug SKH717. The object of the experiment was in a state of combat readiness for 4 continuous 20-hour days. Being asleep only 4 hours a day, the object remained awake and mobile. And frequently used by the community drug Provigil (known also as Modafinil) keeps civilians awake up to 48 hours, and its successor, Armodafinil is currently under examination in the Office of the Food and Drug Administration (USA), tested on a more lasting effect.

The pharmaceutical company Cephalon developed both drugs in order to combat narcolepsy (sudden irresistible attacks of short duration to half an hour of sleep that occur in different circumstances by certain diseases of the brain), sleep apnea (cessation of breathing during sleep) and by shifts of sleep cycles. But the struggle with sleep has much more far-reaching consequences. For example, the appearance of lamps allowed not to stop working at night, and day and night vigil will be the next step.

What are the consequences?

Yes, the drug will make us more productive. But is it good? Will we become day and night workaholics, or the day-night regular customers of night clubs? "Generic Provigil - is just the beginning," - says sleep researcher David Dinges from the University of Pennsylvania. Foster agrees with him: "Maybe we will become the first biological specimens, whose day lasts 24 hours. But we must take into account the fact that we know very little about the consequences of the suppression of sleep. "(For example, rats are dying on the seventeenth day of wakefulness).

The drug acts on one or two of the neurotransmitters (chemical substances whose molecules take part in the transmission of nerve impulses from the closure on the operating element and from one nerve cell to another). It is not a substitute for a proper rest. According to Dinges, the drug may be effective for some time, but it cannot become a full replacement of the chemical sleep yet.   As the drug is used off label, you can easily buy Provigil at the nearest drugstore around the US, Europe or Australia or order Provigil at reliable online pharmacies.

Such drugs as Generic Provigil effectively help people by combating sleepiness and staying awake for longer. But are they useful for our health too?