Adderall vs. Modafinil: How Do They Evaluate?

Adderall and modafinil are central nervous system stimulant medicines (psychostimulants). Each of those medication have similar properties and related applications. Both medication are listed as managed substances by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration.


Adderall is the model name of a mixed form of two medicine: amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. This combination of medication has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the therapy of consideration deficit hyperactivity dysfunction (ADHD) and the sleep problem narcolepsy (a dysfunction where an individual could expertise sleep attacks throughout the day and through activities similar to driving). Both of the primary ingredients in Adderall are central nervous system stimulant medications.

Adderall is available in a direct-release form (Adderall IR) and an prolonged-release form (Adderall XR). The fast-launch form of the drug lasts for about 4–6 hours; the prolonged-release form typically lasts for about 12 hours.

Adderall is classed as a Schedule II controlled substance. It’s due to this fact considered to have a significant risk for abuse and the development of physical dependence.


Modafinil, higher known by the brand name Provigil, is also a central nervous stimulant drug. Modafinil is often referred to as an eugeroic medicine, which is a medicine that promotes alertness and wakefulness. Modafinil is approved by the FDA to treat daytime sleepiness in people who have a number of different conditions, including:


Shift work dysfunction, a formal dysfunction that includes a disruption of regular sleeping hours when one is working nights

Sleepiness that occurs in other medical conditions like obstructive sleep apnea

Modafinil is also a managed substance but categorised at a much lower level of control/severity than Adderall. Modafinil is assessed as a Schedule IV managed substance. The distinction in the formal classification of Adderall and modafinil indicates that the overall general research and the opinion of the federal authorities is that Adderall is a significantly more dangerous drug of abuse than modafinil.

All stimulant medicine share related mechanisms of action. Because of this, even when prescription stimulants which might be considered to be comparatively gentle like modafinil are compared to stimulants which have a significant potential for abuse (e.g., cocaine), the findings point out that there’s a comparable mechanism of action these drugs. Some sources will try to capitalize on this finding and state that related mechanisms of motion point out similar potentials for abuse; nevertheless, this will not be always true.

Adderall is believed to exert its effects by each blocking the reuptake of the excitatory neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine, and by truly growing the intracellular focus of those neurotransmitters by releasing them from storage units in neurons. Modafinil is also believed to have an effect on several different neurotransmitters, together with excitatory neurotransmitters like dopamine and glutamate (increasing their availability) and decreasing the availability of inhibitory neurotransmitters like gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA).

Though the drugs have approved uses, the prescription of those drugs is often made based on uses that they are not formally approved to address. This is true for many completely different types of medications.

Off-label uses for Adderall are designed to take advantage of it stimulant effects. Adderall may be used for weight management, to increase alertness, and to address issues with obesity.

Modafinil is also prescribed to address conditions that its stimulant effects could treat, together with treating fatigue and lethargy in individuals with quite a few neurological problems comparable to a number of sclerosis or Parkinson’s disease, in cancer patients, and even the fatigue that happens in patients with scientific depression.

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