Home Guest Contributor Provigil vs. Nuvigil: Which Smart Drug Is For You?

Provigil vs. Nuvigil: Which Smart Drug Is For You?


Smart drugs have been around for a while. Science fiction has hailed them as wonder drugs that can turn human beings into supercomputers, stealth assassins, savants and spies.

In a highly competitive world, you have to be the very best. It is no longer enough to be the best version of yourself, but the best performer within your team. That often means pulling all-nighters and going to meetings with little to no sleep.

You may have noticed that most high performers fail to juggle between their professional life, home life, and personal life. They either end up choosing whatever they find most appealing, or they burn out faster than a meteor.

There are hundreds of human-made and natural nootropics that can boost your brain function. Since the brain is a complex organ with multiple cortices, sulci, and gyri that control different functions, it is understandable that the various compounds can affect them differently. Thus, although moth armodafinil and modafinil are nootropic compounds, they have different effects on the brain.

Curious about smart drugs?

Armodafinil and modafinil are smart drugs that can improve your cognition, thinking capacity, problem-solving ability and memory. Provigil is brand-name modafinil, and Nuvigil is a brand name armodafinil. The answer to Armodafinil vs Modafinil – Is Nuvigil Different From Provigil is tough.

Armodafinil vs. Modafinil: scientific studies

Modafinil is right now the most popular nootropic in the market. Moreover, most scientific studies for the last few years have used modafinil and its effects on the sample populations.

  • Study 1 – Some of the most famous studies include a 2011 study that involved 48 Navy air traffic controllers. As an effect of the smart drug, they showed fewer momentary lapses of attention as compared to the controllers, who did not take modafinil.
  • Study 2 – another study involved the military. The subject remained awake for 64 hours after taking the smart drug. While awake his behavior showed that modafinil is an effective mood stabilizer. It has the abilities of amphetamine in maintaining the cognitive abilities of the person in question.

Both Nuvigil and Provigil elicit similar side effects. The most common side effect includes headaches that can occur about 20% of the time.

The structural difference between modafinil and armodafinil

Modafinil is an enantiomer. That is when a molecule is present in two forms – one is the mirror image of the other (much like your hands). R-Modafinil and S-Modafinil have different stereo-chemical properties. Hundreds of natural enzymes in our body have similar enantiomeric forms to stimulate activity.

Although the active ingredient is similar in both the drugs, Nuvigil can affect a person differently than Provigil. You can expect a substantial boost of mental energy from both of them, but Provigil might show fewer side effects. For many, Provigil shows no side effects at all. Both of them are analeptic drugs that can treat obstructive sleep apnea, narcolepsy, and shift work disorder. However, their prescribed dosage is often different. Both of them work by stimulating monoamine secretion. As a result, psychiatrists might recommend them for the treatment of ADHD, depersonalization disorder, addiction to cocaine, post-chemo cognitive impairment, cognitive enhancement, fatigue and mood disorders.

Provigil vs. Nuvigil: which one should you take?

Which smart drug you should take will depend on your doctor’s prescription and the conditions that call for the treatment. The regular Provigil (modafinil) is a racemate. It has both the R and S molecules in equal proportions. Due to the difference between their half-lives, you can expect its effects to peak after 5 hours of taking Provigil. After the initial 5-6 hours, your body will have very low levels of S-modafinil, but R-modafinil will still be there. Post 10 hours, you are likely to have 50% of the initial concentration in your blood.

If your life is less stressful, modafinil is the better choice, but if you don’t have the time for the tapering action of the compound, armodafinil might make sense.