What are the long term effects of daily Modafinil usage?

You’re here because you, like me, wanted something more out of your life. At some point, you chose to perform better.

So you went ahead and unlocked the full mental prowess of your brain with nootropics, particularly Modafinil.

focus and concentrationBut have you wondered what the aftereffects of something that is this powerful are? Well, you’re not alone.

Optimizers like Tim Ferriss have discussed the potential risks of modafinil use. I asked myself the same question a few months back and did a little bit of research on it.

So rest easy and let me share with you what I’ve found.

What Makes Modafinil So Popular

Modafinil is one of the oldest nootropic drugs available. It has been in circulation for more than a decade and a half.

There are several qualities that have made it one of the most popular drugs of its kind in circulation.

  • It was prescribed by doctors for the treatment of narcolepsy and sleep disorders since a long time ago.
  • Since it is FDA approved, people trust it.
  • There are a lot more people advocating its benefits than not.

These are all things that you already knew or could find easily around the Internet.

What about documented effects that people go through when they take it?

Modafinil has been prescribed in the USA since 1998, and adverse reactions are uncommon. Only when it’s it was taken in conjunction with other substances like alcohol or other stimulants, above the recommended dosage, do users report anxiety and/or overstimulation.

Most of these cases could’ve been avoided by the user with better judgment abilities.


Memory and Focus

Regular use of Modafinil is seen to alleviate basic ailments relating to the brain, like memory loss and forgetfulness to major diseases like Parkinson’s and dementia.

Three studies have shown Modafinil to significantly improve short-term and working memory in healthy volunteers. Improvements in short-term memory have a huge effect in situations like listening to a lecture, reading, or studying.

Read more: Complete Modafinil Review

Neural Repair

Modafinil repairs damage due to oxidative stress and reduces levels of harmful chemicals present in the brain.

This type of damage occurs when our brain is constantly exposed to workloads and lack of sleep.

This, if prolonged, can lead to neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

Increase Adaptability

Modafinil enables you to establish new patterns quicker than you usually can. It does this by stimulating neuroplasticity in the brain enabling it to grasp new information quicker.

Negative long-term side effects

The drug could cause some serious problems in the long term. It affects your sleep pattern because in the natural time you need to sleep, you are still under the effect of the drug.

Staying awake

The drug forces your body to stay awake more than it needs to be and therefore disturbs its ability to evaluate how much sleep it needs. The brain needs to take a break and get rid of all metabolic waste that accumulates when you work. And it does this when you sleep.

Not hitting the sack once a while is fine, but try not to do it consistently when you’re on Modafinil. If you don’t watch out and get enough sleep, you will do some damage to your brain. If you use Modafinil for a long time, you could develop some sleep deficiencies similar to the ones experienced by cocaine users.

Dry Mouth

There are a lot of people complaining about this and what I do about it is I carry around/ chew sugar-free gum.

My case of dry mouth isn’t that bad so I can manage. If you do, though, you need to consult your doctor.

The Crash

This is a common factor with all nootropics out there in the world. This is because anything which increases dopamine in the system automatically falls prey to the sudden withdrawal of it from the system.

You’ll be surprised to know that the worst crashes happen because of caffeine. Modafinil is a much better alternative, functionally and has less of a crash. But still, it is not completely ruled out.

Modafinil tolerance

This happens with any drug that you take regularly. The human body automatically gains tolerance to any substance when exposed to it regularly over a period of time. Modafinil also has the same problem.

drug_toleranceOne way of beating it when you can cycle different types of nootropics, the body does not have enough time to get used to them and hence the drugs’ full potential can be utilized.

But to be absolutely honest, I wouldn’t exactly call them drawbacks, because when you overdo something potent as this, it tends to bite you back.

Ramp up your dosages slowly, taking ample time between increments and you should be fine.

The minute you sense something’s awry, revert to the older ‘safe’ dose.

Dosage Levels

Well, I’ll start this with how I went about fixing the dosage levels for myself.

i. I started off very cautiously with 25 mg before breakfast and 25 mg more after lunch for the first week or two.

ii. Eventually I doubled the dosage to 50 mg x 2, roughly three days a week for a month.

iii. Finally I settled on my ideal level at 100 mg Modafinil, twice a day. This is one standard Modalert pill split into two 100 mg doses. I found having no ill effects after 2 months of consistent usage.

Notice how my trial periods increased along with dosage? I recommend this because it gives your body more time to get used to the larger dose.

And like with all nootropic drugs, switch it out for some other drug if you are planning on taking it every day. This ensures that you get the maximum benefit out of your dosage.

The max dose for good results without any side effects is 400mg. I’ve read this and had many people tell me that anything above this won’t give you additional benefits.

In fact, if you keep taking this dose, you are bound to have negative experiences.


I hope I’ve been able to answer some of your queries when it comes to long-term side-effects of Modafinil.

These are the most common gremlins when it comes to nootropics, but for me personally, the trade-offs are worth potential gains.

Actually, it isn’t just me here, a lot of people I know swear by it and include it in their daily routine.

As always, remember to consult a doctor before you start on any course of medication as each person has a unique constitution they need to look after.

What might be a day full of positivity for one person, can be a nightmarish 12 hours for another.

Did I miss any effects? Please share them in the comments below.