Preparation for examinations could wear one out completely. It goes without saying that scaling series of exam hurdles without getting worked up shows a lot of taking. And this is the worldly fate of many collegians in our country; they spend a huge chunk of their day attending classes with little or no interlude for rest in-between. Lethargy from exhaustion sets in each evening after school, hence studying becomes a hegemonic tussle and procrastination never seems to be far away from them.
So, by the time rumours of exam calls begin to waft in, many a student starts to feel no longer at ease. Then the fact begins to drop into their heads like balls of lead that they haven’t covered considerable grounds. Then from that moment on up, twenty-four hours start to seem five less. Every stroke of the ticking clock would seem to hammer on their chest. At that point, one is much likely to consider pulling an all-nighter to augment the painfully paltry daytime sessions.
It is a time-worn tradition among students to have supplies of coffee, caffeine or Vitamin-B drugs handy when exam deadlines begin to draw near, to keep them awake all night. Also, the stories have been told of how students of old used to dip their bare feet in cold water for hours on end in order to improve their focus during all-night sessions.
However, these methods have begun to wane out of focus and students have their eyes afar field now and thus the use of study drugs has become a growing trend in many colleges across the country. But, while these drugs may boost concentration, they do not come without their fair share of risks.
Also called smart drugs, nootropics, cognitive enhancers and neuro enhancers, study drugs are prescription stimulants often misused by students to enable them concentrate and keep awake. But although students use a variety of substances to help them study, the term study drugs usually refers to ADHD medications.
Research has shown over time that, by boosting dopamine levels in the brain, ADHD medications assist ADHD children concentrate, behave in school and complete schoolwork. These drugs which belong to a family of drugs called amphetamines include Dexedrine, Adderall, Vyvanse, Concerta and Ritalin.
The Drug Enforcement Administration categorized amphetamines under Schedule II controlled substances, showing that they are endorsed for medical use, although they can easily be abused. When these drugs are misused, they can cause an array of dangerous short- and long-term side effects, viz;
Among the risks of taking these drugs include altered sex drive, increased blood pressure and/or heart rate, anxiety, insomnia, agitation, headache, nausea, restlessness and loss of appetite. These study drugs function by increasing dopamine levels, hence one could experience heavy crashes if he or she should using stop using the drug.
There have even been recurrent reports of students falling asleep while the exams they took the drugs to study for went on. Others have described feelings of hopelessness, fatigue, paranoia, depression and anxiety. The risk of reliance on the drug heightens when the student is under compulsion to take the drugs just to avoid the terrible crash that still inevitably comes.
The consequent exhaustion and depression result from depletion of the body’s energy supplies and dopamine levels. There is a tendency for students to exploit these drugs in the area of weight loss when they discover the action of these drugs in subduing appetite. Health experts have also found that these drugs could cause hallucinations..
College students are advised to steer clear of prescription amphetamines as these drugs can cause severe side effects, especially addiction. Misusing study drugs can impair focus, disrupt sleep, and cause depression. It could also lead to death on the long run. These long-term side effects can mar academic performance, thereby defeating the aim of taking the drugs in the first place.
However, experts suggest that, instead of these potentially harmful drugs, such natural mind-enhancing methods as eating balanced meals, getting enough sleep, taking coffee or ginseng, or engaging in regular exercise can be employed to enhance focus and study performance. And to help college students beat deadlines, the power of effective time management cannot be overemphasized!