Citation: (not)Sleepy/Dopey. "Effective for Prescribed Use: An Experience with Modafinil (exp72498)". Erowid.org. Mar 30, 2018. erowid.org/exp/72498
I work in the medical field and have been on night shifts all of my working life (I'm 40). Never a problem with night shift until the last few years. Probably my age catching up with me. Having sleepiness interfere with my work when my work is healthcare is not a good thing for anybody involved.
Being unable to change my shift now and not wanting to use anything stronger than Melatonin as a sleep aid (I don't like sleep meds) I was thrilled to hear about Modafinil. The literature suggested a low incidence of minor side effects and the wakefulness that I desired. My physician prescribed Provigil for Shift-work Sleep Disorder.
My first dose of 200 mg gave me a horrible, dull headache that lasted all night (one of the listed side effects). I was able to stay awake and alert all night though. I really wasn't sure if I wanted to take it again though because the headache was so bad. I decided to try it for 1 full week before discarding the remedy because it really worked well at keeping me alert.
The headache has not returned after about 6 months of use. Sometimes I notice muscle tension in my neck and back but I can control it. Occasionally I find I am breathing heavy, but not out of need for air, rather due to tension/anxiety/excitability.
Occasionally I find I am breathing heavy, but not out of need for air, rather due to tension/anxiety/excitability.
This is controllable too as soon as I become aware of it. The one side effect I did not experience was the euphoria- darn it! :) I did however notice mood swings, happy to sad back and forth, certainly nothing 'euphoric' though.
Experimenting with dosage I've found that less than 200 mg eases side effects but does not keep me alert as I need to be. My physician prescribed Ritalin when I informed him of the mood swings- that didn't last long- each of 8 doses made me horribly angry. No more Ritalin for me! So I've settled on Provigil and found that side effects are less severe the longer I take it.
One thing I've noticed differently than other experiences I've read is the duration of action. When I take Provigil the effects last for about 16 hours. Another reason I tried Ritalin- shorter duration. I usually take Provigil an hour before I leave for work. Although I have been able to sleep while taking Provigil, it is difficult even 10 hours after taking it.
So my experience is simply that I feel normal again, I don't fade into micronaps at dangerous times at work, I don't miss entire conversations because of micronapping, I don't fall asleep while driving home (happened several times before Provigil, only one minor wreck), I feel like I'm supposed to be awake at night. What I don't feel is anything that would I would consider recreational or fun. I don't take any recreational drugs so perhaps I don't have a good base to judge my experience, but I'm just glad to have found something to make me feel normal again until I can get away from working nights.
Now if I could just get my family and friends to understand that I really do need to sleep during the day.
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