Phenibut’s INSANE Benefits (and Brutally Awful Side Effects)
Phenibut is commonly used as a nootropic, an anti-anxiety medication, and sleep aid.
Phenibut has a somewhat checkered past. The drug was developed by the USSR in the 1960’s as a trial experiment on psychiatric patients.
Tested at the Soviet Union at the Academy of Medical Sciences USSR and the I. M. Herzen Leningrad Pedagogical Institute USSR, the drug was primarily targeted at younger patients and soon was administered as a strong anti-anxiety treatment.
The drug became further institutionalized by the Soviet scientific community, becoming an integral part of a cosmonaut’s medical kit as a treatment for stress during the Apollo-Soyuz space missions.
It is still used today in Russia. It does not have common use in the United States.
Phenibut claims to ease anxieties and improve psychological states. It finds use as an anxiolytic. It is also given to patients before and after surgery. In Russia, doctors have found many different uses for the treatment.
In this article:
- Video: Phenibut Explained
- What Does Phenibut Do?
- The Effectiveness of Phenibut
- Phenibut -> GABA -> Lower Anxiety
- Phenibut Dosage
- Positive Effects: The Benefits of Using Phenibut
- Sensations on Phenibut – How Does it Feel?
- The Dark Side of Phenibut: Negative Side Effects
- What happens during Phenibut withdrawal
- Beating the anxiety of Phenibut Withdrawal: a Method That Works
- Handle with care
Video: Phenibut Explained
First time Phenibut user? Start with this quick and easy to understand video about Phenibut.
It’ll quickly cover the basics and how this powerful nootropic relieves anxiety while still giving a slight dopamine boost.
Thanks to Chris from GLL for making the video. His YouTube channel is full of helpful self-development tips, so check that out.
What Does Phenibut Do?
This is effective as the this keeps the brain less excitable. It then stimulates receptors for dopamine. This enhances positive mood.
The most controversial feature of Phenibut is in its depressive function. It blocks beta-phenethylamine.
It works as a depressant to the central nervous system. Along with other issues, this quality may contribute to the drug’s dependence.
In Russia, Phenibut is a common treatment for anxiety. It is also used as a sleep aid. It has a calming effect on users.
Phenibut is often given to patients before and after surgeries. It is also believed to improve cognition. Its processes are said to help the brain focus and concentrate.
Phenibut As Medication
Russia has used Phenibut as medication for decades, and is used today both as a medication and off-label use for a variety of conditions:
- Anxiety disorders
- Fears and phobias
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Sleep trouble caused by neurosis
The United States does not readily use Phenibut as a medication. It has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Phenibut as a Nootropic
Recreational users often take Phenibut to feel good, euphoric and outgoing. It’s great for sex too. Great to listening to music. It is used to calm stress and it helps staying composed.
Some evidence points to an increase in mental capacity. Some users claim the supplement aided in problem solving and creativity. Without much formal testing, however, it is difficult to say for sure.
There are other nootropics with fewer risks. Modafinil has a reputation of enhancing cognitive functions, giving a boost of energy and increases focus. In the United States, users need a prescription to take it.
Modafinil does have a prodrug called Adrafinil that is available as a legal supplement. Adrafinil becomes Modafinil after metabolizing. The biggest difference is that Adrafinil use comes with a risk of liver damage.
The Effectiveness of Phenibut
It takes only a few minutes to experiences a sense of total calm after taking Phenibut.
Depending on its purpose, it can be taken at different times. For the general relief of anxiety, it is taken during the day. To remedy sleep issues, it is taken a couple of hours before going to bed.
Phenibut causes relaxation. It even has sedative properties. This explains its use before and after surgeries.
When taken at night at lower doses people gradually feel a sense of sleepiness. This is why some people use Phenibut to relax them and take it an hour or two before sleep.
Phenibut -> GABA -> Lower Anxiety
Phenibut works because it readily crosses the blood-brain barrier and binds to GABA receptors in the brain.
In fact, Phenibut is just a modified version of the naturally occurring GABA neurotransmitter; their chemical structures are virtually identical except for an additional phenyl side group in Phenibut.
Once it interacts with the central nervous system, it is able to help lower levels of over-excitement within the brain. More specifically, it decreases some of the sensitivity of your neurons to the neurochemical messages sent between areas of the brain.
By making sure that only the most important messages get through and blocking extraneous information, you can prevent the anxiety-inducing effects of over-stimulation.
Phenibut doesn’t just work on GABA receptors: it has the added benefit of partially binding Dopamine receptors.
An equally (if not much more) powerful neurotransmitter in the brain, Dopamine is responsible for controlling functions like mood and movement and regulating our pleasure/pain cycle. Dopamine is intimately connected with our sense of pleasure and the reward system in our brain.
It also has a function in the brain systems that control attention and focus. As the levels of this brain chemical are increased when taking Phenibut dosages, this can lead to improved mood and even more motivation.
Everyone’s always asking me how much they should take.
Here’s my answer…
Everyone’s phenibut experience is unique, but in general, men should take about 2 – 2.5 grams and women 1 – 1.2 grams of Phenibut in a day.
More information on dosage is here: What Are The Best Doses of Phenibut.
Positive Effects: The Benefits of Using Phenibut
First time users often pose the question, “what does phenibut feel like?”
Before I dive in, it should be noted that I only take pure phenibut crystals, which I buy here.
Sensations on Phenibut – How Does it Feel?
The effects of phenibut simultaneously combine mild-to-moderate sedation with mild-to-moderate stimulation, allowing one to feel physically relaxed and mentally focused at the same time.
This increases sociability, lowering stress and inhibition levels, without impairing judgment.
While some people have compared the primary effects of phenibut to that of a light dose of GHB or MDMA, it’s really just an effective anti-anxiety, antidepressant medication, with few side-effects and remarkable health benefits.
Phenibut gives some users the sensation of mild euphoria, tantamount to a mild “high”. As such, it can be abused if not used correctly. Yet, the euphoric phenibut high is not intense, and taking more of it doesn’t intensify the high.
After consuming a dose of phenibut–usually between 250 milligrams and 1000 milligrams — how long it takes to feel the effects varies considerably from person to person.
Personally, I’ve found that phenibut works most consistently when taken on an empty stomach, and I feel its effects in around 15 or 20 minutes.
However, it takes longer for most people to feel the effects.
Mant people really feel all the effects kicking in in around 1 or 2 hours after oral ingestion, and then the primary effects usually last for around 4 or 5 hours, although pleasant lingering effects can last for another 24 hours.
While you won’t ever truly know until you’ve tasted the pudding, the following descriptions come pretty close:
- The best description of a good Phenibut experience is “extreme calmness”
- A moderate to drastic reduction in anxiety – general and social
- A moderate to drastic increase in pro social behavior and the desire to be social
- A moderate to pronounced “sense of well-being”
- A slight to moderate euphoria; high levels of euphoria can be achieved sometimes
- Music sounds amazing, somewhat like MDMA
The list goes on…
- Slight to drastic increase in alertness, this is also due to stimulants
- Moderate increase in cognitive processes (you think faster)
- Dilated pupils from taking 3000mg+ in a 24/hr period
- Slightly improved memory retention
- Increased sexual performance (low doses)
- Unlike benzodiazepines, Phenibut enhances instead of killing your motivation
The Dark Side of Phenibut: Negative Side Effects
Build-up and Tolerance
Building up tolerance against phenibut or one of its many effects is quite common, but this build up does not correlate with increases or decrease in phenibut’s nootropic effects.
In other words, more is not necessarily better; re-dosing will only worsen the hangover and provide little to no cognitive benefit.
The first signs of tolerance may be seen within as little as five days. For this reason, it is commonly used for one to two week periods, or dosage is increased by 25-30% after two weeks.
This makes phenibut ideal for short periods of stress or anxiety, but not ideal for chronic use. It is possible that taking only one dose daily may partially reduce the development of tolerance.
Consider this case – an individual taking phenibut in order to get rid of insomnia might see momentary relief of the surface layer symptoms, then after a week of using the product the same pr