In Europe, Modafinil is now only approved for the treatment of narcolepsy. Modafinil for depression is not used. In addition to the improper use as a neuroenhancer during exams or at work, there are increasing examples of the off-label use of Modafinil.
What Is Modafinil?
Modafinil belongs to the group of centrally acting nervous system stimulants with similar yet not identic properties of sympathomimetics. While it is not a direct dopamine receptor agonist, it is likely to bind to the dopamine transporter and inhibit dopamine reuptake. Other stimulants, such as methylphenidate and amphetamine increase neuronal activity throughout the brain. Modafinil mainly acts on brain regions that are responsible for the control of waking up, sleep, alertness, and vigilance. While the area of application of Modafinil is still relatively broad in the USA (sleep disorders, narcolepsy, sleep apnea, and shift work sleep disorder), in Europe, it is now limited to the narcolepsy. Modafinil is indicated for the treatment of adults with excessive sleepiness, difficulty in staying awake and an increased tendency to fall asleep.
The effect of Modafinil on vigilance and wakefulness is also misused as a neuroenhancer, so Modafinil should be used as a so-called smart drug before exams or by executives to increase mental performance. Improvement in brain performance has already been confirmed in studies.
How Does Modafinil Work?
Modafinil is a central psychostimulant similar to sympathomimetic agents. The exact mechanism by which Modafinil promotes alertness is currently still unknown. The active substance appears to act as a dopamine reuptake inhibitor, which would explain the wakefulness-promoting effect. Modafinil also inhibits noradrenaline reuptake, but in a weaker form than the effects observed on the dopamine receptor.
How Long Does Modafinil Cure Depression?
Depression is not a disease caused by a certain bacterium or a severed tendon, but a result of very complex, interlocking factors. These are based in part on peculiarities in the human genome, but also in part on the changes in brain function that stems from individual history. Experiences in childhood, but also acute life events should be taken into account.
When it comes to Modafinil depression, a distinction must be made between the exhaustion situation, which is caused by long-term exertion, a lack of recovery, especially a lack of sleep. In this case, it makes sense to talk to the patients about their lifestyle, performance limits, career expectations, and social network. If it is possible to make it clear to the patients that compression of the task accomplishment that goes beyond their abilities and performance reserves must be avoided, then the first step in the right direction – Modafinil and depression – has already been taken.
If this is not possible straight away, relaxation procedures and cognitive-behavioral training appear appropriate. The rapid use of antidepressants does not appear to be advisable, just as the prescription of sedatives (benzodiazepines of the Valium type) or stimulants (Dexidrin, Modafinil).
The Symptoms of Depression
Depression is to be distinguished from an ordinary response to a sincerely negative occasion. Endeavors were made to characterize this state utilizing certain demonstrative criteria, however the changes between the different types of melancholy are liquid, and the inflexible adherence to indicative plans has demonstrated to be of little use in treatment and research. Modafinil for bipolar depression is appropriate.
A modest number of patients suffering from this disorder create ridiculous musings, the alleged dreams, which are now and again strictly shaded and are regularly experienced as God’s discipline. These hallucinating thoughts can likewise prompt ridiculous feelings of dread. The patient accepts that he is vigorously owing debtors, can’t bear to remain in the medical clinic, and dives the family into ruin.
In other cases, unrealistic fears about the physical condition are in the foreground, assumptions play a major role here, according to which a serious, as yet unknown, the disease would spread in the body that has not yet been found.
Depression can start creeping or it can happen suddenly, out of the blue. The average manifestations are miserable state of mind, rest issue, poor fixation, tiredness, fractiousness, sluggish development, absence of hunger, and weight reduction, just as misery and the failure to sincerely take part in occasions in the prompt region. There are frequent vacillations in the day, ordinarily, the downturn is more articulated in the first part of the day than toward the evening. The enthusiasm for exercises that are typically decidedly conditioned fades away, there is quite often an absence of sexual desire or even the powerlessness to take part in sexual activity. In serious cases, sadness is articulated to such an extent that the will to live is stifled and musings of suicide happen, up to the arranging and execution of suicide endeavors.
Modafinil and Depression
In contrast to obesity, the off-label use of Modafinil for depression is relatively widespread. Several clinical studies have been carried out in this regard. It has been revealed that modafinil as an add-on therapy has a positive effect on uni- and bipolar depression.
Indications for Use of Modafinil
The indications for Modafinil remain narcolepsy with and without cataplexy; Moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea syndrome with excessive daytime sleepiness despite adequate CPAP therapy and moderate to severe chronic shift worker syndrome with excessive sleepiness in patients with night shift changes if other sleep hygiene measures have not led to a satisfactory improvement.
Is Modafinil Harmful?
The side effects of Modafinil now also indicate mental difficulties, for example, nervousness, pipedreams, and suicidal thoughts. The medication ought not to be utilized in patients with psychosis, sorrow, or dementia. An ongoing treatment with a gradual controlled Modafinil dose titration additionally denounces use in discouraged patients treated with an SSRI: daytime tiredness and fatigue did not improve in depressed patients with Modafinil compared to placebo.
The Most Common Side Effects of Modafinil
Modafinil can cause perilous extreme responses. The manufacturer requests that specialists quit taking the medication following skin rashes show up. Rashes and angioedema were seen in the clinical examinations when utilized in youngsters (0.8 percent). Among them was a patient with a potential Stevens-Johnson disorder and a case with a multi-organ excessive sensitivity response.
While endorsing Modafinil, unique consideration should be paid to hypertension. Customary observing of blood pressure and the pulse is required in these patients. Standard ECG assessments ought to be done in patients with cardiovascular ailments.
History of dependence is viewed as a total contraindication, although there is no proof of mental or physical reliance from past clinical involvement in treatments as long as 10 years with Modafinil. However, there are first reports of the improper use of Modafinil as a party drug.