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Eugeroics are a class of drugs considered to be stimulants that don't act like traditional stimulants (e.g. caffeine, amphetamine etc). The most prominent of these are Adrafinil and Modafinil.

Supposedly they only stimulate when stimulation is required, but they do act like stimulants in reality, just without the "crash" associated with amphetamines, and also without the "high" also associated with stimulants. This is because the work on completely different mechanisms.

Eugeroics are unique in that they promote wakefulness, without being a dopamine shot like other stimulants, which is why they are prescribed to treat narcolepsy, hypersomnia, and cataplexy.

They are often also branded as smart drugs, because of their potential in cognitive enhancement, though this doesn't seem to be universally agreed. Smart drugs is a difficult topic because what is a smart drug to one person, may be useless to another, making it very subjective outside of actual research.

What can be said about Modafinil and eugeroics is that they definitely promote wakefulness and vigilance for most people.

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“Conclusion seems to be - definitely works, but may have little use with individuals already performing at their peak or already on the high IQ range. Cognitive enhancement effects are mild. It would seem to be better to use eugeroics to "compensate" an underperforming brain.

Mechanisms of modafinil: A review of current research

The tendency of modafinil to increase alpha power and decrease theta power () in human subjects is both consistent with modafinil’s stimulant properties and suggestive that modafinil improves brain function, an effect shown in the helicopter pilot study () and in the cognitive performance studies discussed below.

None of the studies regarding EEG changes from modafinil that we found measured modafinil’s effects on event-related EEG changes in instances of mental exertion, but modafinil’s resting EEG profile and stimulant properties do suggest that it would enhance mental performance, at least in individuals in the condition of sleep-deprivation, a common factor in stimulant abusers. A number of studies testing modafinil’s effects on neurocognitive functioning tend to confirm that modafinil mildly enhances cognitive performance in healthy volunteers, especially with regards to executive function. These results are summarized in Tables 13. There were two studies published by Randall et al that showed little or no significant effect of modafinil on neurocognitive test performance in healthy individuals (), but a later review done by this group on their own research showed that modafinil did improve neurocognitive performance in average IQ subjects but not high IQ subjects (). The authors concluded that this indicates that modafinil has limited cognitive enhancing effects in already high-performing well-rested individuals, but they did not consider ceiling effects in neurocognitive tests designed to measure cognitive impairment as some of the other studies did ().

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