Top 6 Study Pills on the Market

Studying is never easy, especially studying for an exam. It requires concentration, attention, and energy. When the time comes to sit for an exam, your memory will determine whether you pass or fail. This is where study pills come in. They can help improve your memory, concentration, energy, and productivity.  Study pills may decrease symptoms of attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD), attention deficit disorder (ADD), and narcolepsy. Commonly used study pills include Ritalin, Modalert, Limidax, Adrafinil, Phenylpiracetam, and Focalin.

study pills

What Are Study Pills?

More and more students are turning to study pills to help them perform well academically. These pills may help increase concentration and energy, improve mental processing, and support memory retention. They can activate the central nervous system and offer cognitive benefits.

Clinical studies have shown that some supplements can help improve the brain’s efficiency in performing certain tasks – like making decisions, concentrating, and staying alert.

Study pills also may go by names such as nootropics, focus supplements, and cognitive enhancers. You can get some supplements without a prescription, and they can be safe and beneficial when used properly.

Teenage girl studying at the desk being tired, isolated on white

Do Study Pills Work?

Cognitive enhancers like Ritalin, Limidax, and Adrafinil can help students to concentrate and stay mentally alert as they study. Many students rely on these study pills to improve their attention span and focus.

Some study pills have been shown to have stimulatory effects and can greatly benefit people who are unable to focus, have poor memory, are very easily distracted, lack motivation, and tend to make impulsive decisions.

Are study pills different from coffee which is taken by many people to increase productivity and cognitive performance? In some ways, study pills are similar to caffeine (the active ingredient in coffee). Most are stimulants meant to activate the central nervous system. However, caffeine has a short half life (it has short-lived effects in the body).

Study pills are usually also specifically designed to stay for a longer period in the body. This makes them more powerful than caffeine.

The Top 6 Study Pills

1)     Limidax

This concentration supplement can enhance clarity, focus, memory, and mood. It may help protect against mental decline and stress. Limidax crosses the blood-brain barrier, assists the central nervous system, and helps in the actions of neurotransmitters responsible for different cognitive processes.

The brain supplement is made up of 8 great ingredients: Citrus Aurantium, Nettle Leaf Extract, Vinpocetine, Green Tea Extract, Glucuronolactone, Yohimbine Standardized Extract, Microencapsulated Caffeine, and Microencapsulated Phenethylamine. These ingredients promote healthy brain function and offer short-term and long-term benefits.

Uses and Applications

This brain supplement can give you greater focus, mental agility, and concentration. If you are a student or a busy professional, these are the benefits you want from a study pills. Limidax can help you to maintain a high level of concentration on all your tasks without continuously losing focus.

Side Effects

The manufacturer does state that side effects with Limidax are rare. However, it seems that when side effects do occur they are about headaches and supressed appetites. The manufacturer states that the headaches are usually just from feeling dehydrated, and to make sure that you are drinking healthy amounts of water during the day.

Legal Status

Currently, Limidax is a dietary supplement, and is regulated by the FDA in the US. Limidax can be purchased without a prescription.


2)     Ritalin

Ritalin is a brand name of methylphenidate. The supplement has been used to help manage the symptoms of narcolepsy and ADHD. It has been used since 1960 but was licensed in 1955. It can have an effect on episodic memory, working memory, and inhibitory control.

Uses and Applications

Ritalin can stimulate dopamine receptor D1, enhancing cognitive function. The study pill also activates adrenoceptor α2 indirectly. Due to these activations, it may increase both episodic and working memory. The nootropic can also increase endurance and stamina for different tasks. However, Ritalin is not a powerful nootropic and may only offer slight benefits for studying. Its effects on the brain are not extensive hence performance gains are modest.

Side Effects

If you take Ritalin in large amounts, it may negatively affect your cognitive function and athletic performance. Other Ritalin side effects include anxiety, loss of appetite, nausea, nervousness, insomnia, agitation, stomach pain, and weight loss.

Legal Status

Ritalin requires a prescription from your doctor in order to purchase at the pharmacy.


3)     Modalert

This study pill is made up of modafinil – which also goes by the brand name Provigil in the U.S. Modafinil was created in France from the compound Adrafinil. Modafinil is now more popular than Adrafinil since it is more effective. In 1998, the supplement gained FDA approval to treat narcolepsy.

It can help with treating shift work sleep disorder and extreme daytime sleepiness linked to obstructive sleep apnea. Modafinil has been shown to enhance cognitive functions and is used to improve overall mental focus and productivity. The supplement may also be helpful in treating ADHD.

Uses and Applications

Modalert is not only used by students, it is also used in the military. Since the supplement has been shown to improve concentration and prevent fatigue, it is used by military personnel in situations where troops are sleep-deprived – like when they go for long missions (jet pilots). Modalert may help improve circadian rhythms and increase sleep time.

Side Effects

Headaches, skin rash, sore throat, diarrhea, gastrointestinal problems, insomnia, fever, tingling, muscle weakness, pain, anxiety, and numbness.

Legal Status

Provigil (modafinil) is a drug that is mainly meant for narcolepsy. It is quite expensive, and most insurances are very strict about covering the cost of Provigil. It will require a prescription from your doctor.


4)     Adrafinil

This synthetic focus supplement can enhance attentiveness without triggering hyperactivity. It has been shown to improve both memory and concentration. Those who take the supplement do so in order to stay alert and awake for a long time. Some doctors prescribe Adrafinil for narcolepsy because it prevents one from sleeping. Adrafinil contains 5 ingredients: magnesium stearate, silicone dioxide, cellulose, modafinil, and gelatin.

Adrafinil works by increasing hypocretin levels and boosting the creation of neurotransmitters and hormones like norepinephrine, dopamine, and histamine. The supplement works on the hormones and neurotransmitters connected with physical and mental performance.

It prevents dopamine from breaking down, lowering stress and improving mood in the process. It may also stimulate the production of serotonin, the hormone responsible for regulating sleep and anxiety.

Uses and Applications

The effects of Adrafinil are similar to those of caffeine. However, they are more noticeable. Those who use it regularly say it has longer-lasting effects than amphetamines and it does not activate the whole body.

Adrafinil may improve concentration, memory, learning capacity, the speed of thought, and energy. It may also decrease stress and improve mood. You can take the cognitive enhancer for a long time without getting addicted. Unlike many other stimulants, it doesn’t change your heart rate or trigger high blood pressure.

Side Effects

Since Adrafinil forces you to stay awake, it can have a negative impact on your sleep pattern. It can also suppress appetite and induce headaches, nausea, and dizziness.

Legal Status

The use of Adrafinil has diminished substantially, because of the much superior Modafinil that was developed. Adrafinil is thought as a cheaper alternative, however, it has additional steps in the body when breaking down and being absorbed. Because of this, side effects generally involve increased levels of liver enzymes. Long term use should be monitored by a medical professional. In the US, this supplement currently exists in a gray area. It is basically sold as a Research Chemical. Because of this, Adrafinil is unregulated, and the quality of the product can vary dramatically from seller to seller. As a result, you might not really know whether the powder you bought is Adrafinil or what else it may contain. We really urge caution with regards to purchasing Adrafinil online.


5)     Phenylpiracetam

This is a central nervous system stimulant that belongs to the racetam family. It is obtained from piracetam and only differs from the compound in one way: a phenyl group is added to its structure. Among the racetam nootropics, phenylpiracetam is one of the most powerful. It is believed to be 50 times more powerful than piracetam. In addition, it is thought that phenylpiracetam is more neuroprotective than piracetam and possesses psychostimulatory properties. It may also improve physical performance.

A few clinical studies suggest that phenylpiracetam may be effective in relieving the symptoms and rate of cognitive decline. Many of the studies used the stimulant for over a month. However, they showed that the benefits of phenylpiracetam may only apply to natural causes of cognitive decline (like stroke and dementia) and not traumatic brain injury.

Uses and Applications

Phenylpiracetam can enhance cognitive function in individuals with some form of impairment. It may help manage the symptoms of depression and anxiety and enhance physical performance. People who use the stimulant regularly say it helps them to be more energetic and motivated and elevates their mood, productivity, and concentration.

Phenylpiracetam is an overall stimulant and can help reverse the depressant effects of diazepam. It may decrease the drug’s ability to induce sleep, ensuring one stays active for longer. It can also increase the learning capacity of students.

Side Effects

Phenylpiracetam may cause headaches, insomnia, jitters, nausea, and irritability. If you take it and start becoming irritable, decrease the dosage, don’t stop taking it altogether.

Legal Status

Phenylpiracetam is similar to Adrafinil’s legal status. We recommend proceeding with extreme caution. It is even more grayish in side effects, and long term side effects are unknown.


6)     Focalin

This is a brand name for the stimulant dexmethylphenidate whose function is to activate the central nervous system. The cognitive enhancer can be helpful in treating narcolepsy and ADHD. It may also improve concentration and attention, helping students study for longer without getting easily distracted, enhancing their study experience.

Uses and Applications

Clinical studies have showed that Focalin can mildly stimulate the central nervous system. It affects the brain chemicals responsible for impulse control and hyperactivity. Because it is a stimulant, it can be used by people who have ADHD who want to improve their concentration and avoid distractions. It can also help them to control their impulsive behavior.

Side Effects

The side effects of Focalin include dry mouth, insomnia, loss of appetite, changes in blood pressure, nervousness, dizziness, irritability, dry eyes, blurred vision, and tics. Other unpleasant psychological side effects include bruxism, confusion, and depression. Focalin may negatively affect people suffering from bipolar disorder and make psychosis worse in psychotic patients.

Legal Status

Focalin requires a prescription from your doctor in order to purchase at the pharmacy.

colorful x-ray scan of brain

The Dangers of Abusing Study Pills

The positive effects of most study pills happen because they act on the brain’s reward system, activating the release of neurotransmitters like norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine. When these neurotransmitters are discharged into the brain in large amounts, they can promote temporary surges of intense attentiveness and focus. This makes it easier for a person to avoid distractions and do specific tasks for longer periods.

However, some study pills cause a crash by quickly exhausting amounts of major neurotransmitters. Some users report experiencing a hangover effect the day after: feeling anxious, tired, depressed, or sluggish. They say they have trouble focusing because of brain fog.

Some study pills can trigger a cycle of dependence. Students may keep relying on them to enhance their cognitive performance, time and again. When abused, the supplements can be as addictive as banned psychostimulants like cocaine. However, their addiction probability is lower.

When used properly, study pills can be very beneficial. They can energize students and improve their memory and concentration. However, when they are abused, they can have lasting negative effects. It is also against the law to be in possession of prescription stimulants like Ritalin unless you have a prescription. All of these different reasons add up to why students should look more into at least trying natural focus supplements that actually work, first, such as Limidax. Versus abusing pharmaceutical stimulants that are associated with many short term and long term side effects.

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