How to Use Modafinil to Quit an Addiction
DISCLAIMER: CONSULT WITH A DOCTOR BEFORE DECIDING ON A TREATMENT PLAN FOR ADDICTION OR ANY OTHER DISEASE.
When I first found out that a close family member was addicted to methamphetamines, I was devastated. Though I had spent years researching cures for cancer and other diseases, I had never been close to someone with this kind of severe substance abuse addiction. I didn’t know where to start. But for me and my loved one, there were several other big obstacles standing in the way of his recovery. Most importantly, he was a Myanmar citizen, he was trapped in Myanmar by the COVID-19 pandemic, he didn’t know he was addicted to something (as he’d never been exposed to the “Just Say No” public service announcements that most westerners know so well), and he had no foundation upon which the idea of “rehab” and talk therapy (which simply does not exist in Myanmar), could help.
So again, I had no idea where to start in terms of figuring out how to help my loved one overcome addiction through self-treatment. But one morning, shortly after hearing the news of his addiction, I had the idea that I should contact a young woman I knew who had been addicted to cocaine. She had lived for a period of time in Myanmar, so I felt like perhaps I could confide in her and then maybe find out how she’d managed to quit taking cocaine without going to rehab.
She was happy to help me and she told me that she was able to overcome addiction to cocaine initially by “switching addictions” from cocaine to caffeine. The idea of switching addictions had never occurred to me, so I started down this train of thought, trying to find nootropics and other legal substances that my loved one could take so that he could at least board an airplane and maybe meet up with us to go the next step of the journey (which I didn’t know just yet).
It was easy to get Modafinil (aka Provigil) in Mexico over-the-counter, so I ordered a stash of it and packed it in a bag. Of course, Modafinil is a schedule 4 substance in many parts of this world, so this posed some challenges, what with all the COVID travel restrictions, but I was willing to dodge the countries where it isn’t legal to get my loved one off the toxic street meth in Myanmar. This was the first hopeful piece of information that I found and I wanted to have plenty of Modafinil on hand for him if he needed a stimulant during his recovery (he never had to use it because he took Mucuna pruriens instead).
What is Modafinil?
Modafinil / Provigil can only be obtained as a prescription in the U.S., but in Mexico (at least at the time of this writing) you can order it online. It is used by psychiatrists in the U.S. to treat sleep apnea and narcolepsy or shift work disorder. It is a stimulant and a CYP3AF Inducer. It can cause side effects like skin rash, blisters, mouth sores, difficulty swallowing, fever, shortness of breath, swelling in the legs, jaundice and other liver problems, facial swelling, suicidal thoughts, aggression, and more. These are the least serious side effects of Modafinil, so keep that in mind if you decide to use it to switch addictions! Of course, it wasn’t an ideal situation for my loved one to use Modafinil to switch addictions from methamphetamines because it would be, for him, like jumping from a frying pan into boiling water, but it’s legal with a prescription in the U.S. (or as an over-the-counter medication in Mexico and a few other countries), so for my situation, I rated it initially as a suitable Plan A for breaking an addiction to methamphetamines. (Mucuna eventually became my Plan A, but it was easier to find Modafinil than Mucuna and to understand the research on Modafinil when I first started my quest for a cure for addiction).
Modafinil is a racemic and a eugeroic medication. It promotes wakefulness, but it isn’t a stimulant and it works differently in the brain than Adderall, cocaine, or street meth. It has a similar effect on alertness and the ability to think, but researchers aren’t exactly sure how it works. It appears to increase several neurotransmitters in the brain like dopamine, serotonin, glutamate, histamine, norepinephrine, and GABA. There is some disagreement among experts about whether or not Modafinil is addictive, but because this drug does affect dopamine levels as a synthetic, non-natural substance, it seems like pure propaganda to say that it is NOT addictive. Of course Modafinil is addictive! People report that they feel a lack of energy, motivation, and depression when they quit taking Modafinil, after all. But it still may be the lesser of two evils if you’re struggling with addiction to Adderall or meth.
To treat an addiction to Modafinil, you can take Mucuna pruriens at 6,000 mg per day along with the other herbal medications that we recommend in our articles about meth addiction. Use 5-HTP to replace serotonin and visit this link to read more about NAC and other powerful herbs and natural substances that can make the withdrawal and detox process very smooth and tolerable.
Each Modafinil pill contains 100-200 mg of Modafinil along with a few other mostly inactive ingredients. It is apparently a much milder stimulant than prescription methamphetamines like Adderall, but it still has an unnatural effect on neurotransmitters in the brain that can lead to addiction.
How to Use Modafinil to Switch Addictions
By the time I got to Modafinil as a possible replacement for cocaine, methamphetamines, and other stimulants, I had read all kinds of material about talk therapy, rehab, and the resistance that many addicts understandably feel toward going through the withdrawal and detox process. I’d watched literally every episode of Intervention that had been recorded, and I felt seriously hopeless about things. Modafinil was the first real pinhole of light that I saw. I reassured my loved one that I’d bring these replacement medicines with me when we came to try to rendezvous with him in Arabia. They would give him a legal replacement for methamphetamines that would maybe make it possible for him to board an airplane and go back home to Mexico from across the world during the pandemic.
I learned through my reading that a number of people use Modafinil to get off Adderall or street meth. Though Adderall and street meth are both much stronger, the Modafinil can “take the edge off” withdrawals and detox. Of course, in the end, my loved one never used Modafinil because I found a much better herbal medicine called Velvet Bean or Mucuna pruriens that is not addictive and that rather, cures addictions of all kinds. But because I had such a strange addiction situation that involved other countries and other laws, I felt like it was important to write about Modafinil as a possible gateway toward healing and post about it here at AlivenHealthy. In some countries Mucuna pruriens (also known as natural L-Dopa) may not be available but perhaps Modafinil IS available and you can use it to switch addictions. To be able to take control over one’s addiction and get onto a drug that’s legal in some countries at least can be a first step in the process toward healing.
To be clear though, Modafinil doesn’t heal the brain the way that Mucuna does. Mostly, it’s just a (sometimes) legal alternative to meth, cocaine, or other stimulants that’s only slightly healthier (maybe) than they are.
Modafinil for ADHD and Depression
In other articles, I’ve talked about the intimate relationship between depression and drug addiction and how often, a treatment for depression is also a treatment for substance abuse and vice versa. Because Modafinil has an effect on some of the most important neurotransmitters in the brain that affect motivation, concentration, and the ability to make decisions for oneself, it stands to reason that it would be helpful to people who have ADHD or depression. Again, I feel like it’s responsible to talk about Modafinil for ADHD or depression in part because people may seek out meth or be unable to quit taking a drug like Adderall in part because they feel like they have no other options. They may have a life situation that makes it impossible for them to gain access to Mucuna pruriens (which is hands-down, the best medicine for addiction), and the least addictive choice that actually heals the brain. But if Mucuna isn’t available, n that case, Modafinil may be worth considering.
If you have ADHD or depression and you’re looking for a way to treat these mental health issues without taking Adderall or other prescription medications that are highly addictive, Mucuna is your best option because it will heal the brain and not just cover up the symptoms of addiction. But note that the whole idea here is to find something that will give you control over your addiction or at least some aspect of your addiction. You can move stepwise toward the addiction cure taking a path that makes sense for you.
Why NOT to Use Modafinil to Switch Addictions
The reason why I chose to use Mucuna and a list of other herbal and natural substances to help my loved one overcome addiction is because my goal for him was healing and a cure. Modafinil is not a cure for addiction. It is another synthetic stimulant that’s addictive similar to meth or cocaine. So it’s not my first choice. It doesn’t promote healing of the brain. Rather, it pushes neurotransmitters out of the brain to create “brain starvation” that ultimately perpetuates addiction. Nonetheless, people have different addiction stories and they have different reasons for choosing to use a drug like Modafinil as a step in the process of curing an addiction. I’m being realistic here. Some people may need to use something like Modafinil in order to move toward a cure.
A lot of so-called experts on addiction claim that underlying any addiction is trauma. And they say that unless the trauma is addressed, the addiction can’t be cured. But I argue that trauma (or rather, the cluster of symptoms we call “trauma”) happens in part because the brain doesn’t have the resources to solve problems. It needs a certain type of food and energy that makes it possible for people to resolve trauma quietly through a natural process of self-reflection without the need for therapy. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule, but my loved one had suffered quite a lot of trauma in his life. With the brain-food-energy provided by the Mucuna bean, he smoothly worked through it all along with his addiction.
So, if trauma is an excuse for using Modafinil, definitely look more closely at the Mucuna bean. It can help you work through your trauma as one of several “plant-counselors” that shaman have used for centuries to make it possible for people to work with themselves in order to overcome whatever difficulties they’ve experienced in their lives.
Legality of Modafinil
Modafinil is legal in many countries, but it’s a schedule 4 substance in the U.S. and Australia. This means, you have to have a prescription to get it and you shouldn’t try to smuggle it across the border if you buy it in Mexico or any other country. Again, if you’re looking for a legal, safe, and super-effective way to break an addiction, Mucuna is your best bet. It’s legal, you can easily grow the beans yourself in your own home, and as a staple food for many people throughout the world, the Mucuna bean is as safe as eating chili soup with pinto beans. In fact, you can cook with it! But don’t let it’s food properties fool you…it’s a powerful anti-addiction medicine that anyone can use legally to get rid of an addiction at home.
Other Important Links:
American Addiction Centers (2020). Can Modafinil Treat Cocaine or Amphetamine Addiction and Withdrawal? Retrieved June 20, 2021 from https://americanaddictioncenters.org/addiction-medications/modafinil
Gateway Foundation (2021). Substituting One Addiction for Another. Retrieved June 20, 2021 from https://www.gatewayfoundation.org/addiction-blog/substitute-addictions/
RxList (2021). Provigil. Retrieved June 20, 2021 from https://www.rxlist.com/provigil-drug.htm
Drugs.com (2020). Modafinil vs. Adderall: What’s the difference? Retrieved June 20, 2021 from https://www.drugs.com/medical-answers/modafinil-adderall-difference-3125139/