Provigil High – What are the Effects and the Risks?

Last Updated: December 19, 2019

Authored by Roger Weiss, MD

Provigil was first introduced in 1970 by Lafon, a French pharmaceutical corporation. Its purpose was to help narcoleptic patients stay alert and awake.
However, it wasn’t until the 90s that they brought Provigil to the US. There, they prescribed it for a condition known as Shift Work Sleep Disorder. In fact, they included other sleep disorders too. They are Narcolepsy, Sleep Apnea, Leg Cramps, and Insomnia. At first, Provigil seemed like an effective pharmaceutical product. The drug served its purpose well. However, in recent years it gained mainstream popularity for its astounding alertness-promoting effects. It is called Provigil high.

Provigil’s main ingredient is Modafinil. It affects the brain by increasing levels of catecholamines from synaptic terminals. They are norepinephrine and dopamine. In other words, it affects the CNS. It does it by boosting the production of mind-alerting chemicals in the brain. As a result, one gets heightened alertness and vigilance.

Pogivil Recreational Use

Usually, one can get Provigil with a doctor’s prescription. Also, the user should use it for medical purposes. However, its medical use turned into a recreational one for its manifold benefits. The Provigil high has become very popular among people who deal with boring daily tasks. They include writing and programming. Therefore, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that so many people use it. In fact, college students, accountants, and programmers swear by it. They refer to it as “the smart pill”. In addition, some of them cannot stop using it. Of course, the reasons why people use Provigil can vary quite a lot:

  • Better/longer attention span
  • Alertness
  • Watchfulness
  • Promotes mental acuity and processing speed
  • Provides the ability to work late
  • College students use it for long studying hours
  • It can help fight depression
  • People have reported that it can benefit one’s weight loss process

Side Effects of Recreational Use of Provigil

Side effects of a Provigil high may include:

  • Back pain
  • Nausea
  • Nervousness
  • Stuffy nose
  • Diarrhea
  • Anxiety
  • Dizziness
  • Upset stomach
  • Trouble sleeping

Additionally, Provigil addiction is not common. However, it is possible to develop a dependence on it. Other than the above mentioned side effects, there are other problems. People have also reported that avid users of Provigil have experienced some difficulties. In fact, they will have headaches and frustration after ceasing their daily dosage.

Before Taking Provigil

Anyone who is at least interested in taking the drug should first talk their doctor to avoid life-threatening situations from a Provigil:

  • Don’t use Provigil if the age is between 10 and 19
  • Do not use Provigil is one is pregnant, want to become pregnant or breastfeeding. It’s because it may impede fetal development.
  • One should not drink alcoholic beverages while on the drug
  • Do not take more than 200 mg per day

If one sees the following symptoms occur while on Provigil? Then, stop taking the drug and call the doctor right away:

  • Swelling of the face, eyes, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Skin rash, hives, sores in the mouth, or skin blisters and peels
  • Trouble swallowing or breathing

Page Sources

  1. Maddalena Mereu, Lauren E. Chun, Thomas Prisinzano, Amy Hauck Newman, Jonathan L. Katz, Gianluigi Tanda. The Unique Psychostimulant Profile of (±)-Modafinil: Investigation of Behavioral and Neurochemical Effects in Mice. Eur J Neurosci. 2017 Jan; 45(1): 167–174.
  2. Roberta Rasetti, Venkata S Mattay, Beth Stankevich, et al. Modulatory Effects of Modafinil on Neural Circuits Regulating Emotion and Cognition. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2010 Sep; 35(10): 2101–2109.
  3. U. Müller, J.B. Rowe, T. Rittman, C. Lewis, T.W. Robbins, B.J. Sahakian. Effects of modafinil on non-verbal cognition, task enjoyment and creative thinking in healthy volunteers. Neuropharmacology. 2013 Jan; 64(5): 490–495.

Published on: May 5th, 2017

Updated on: December 19th, 2019

About Author

Roger Weiss, MD

Dr. Roger Weiss is a practicing mental health specialist at the hospital. Dr. Weiss combines his clinical practice and medical writing career since 2009. Apart from these activities, Dr. Weiss also delivers lectures for youth, former addicts, and everyone interested in topics such as substance abuse and treatment.


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