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There are pills that can keep you awake for 24 hours a day to increase your productivity, but is it worth taking any?

Updated on March 3, 2013
Photo by Marion Doss (
Photo by Marion Doss ( | Source

It is not the greatest invention of the century; such drugs have been in practical use since World War II in 1938, when German troops were taking Amphetamine to increase the lethalness of their fighting; they stayed awake for 24 hours without feeling neither sleepy nor tired, with their mind sharply awake. The British Royal Air Force, American pilots and Japanese pilots also took similar drugs for the same means. Besides used by the military, some other Amphetamine takers include: athletes (i.e. the Major League Baseball), truck drivers, mathematician, writers, musicians (i.e. Rock’n’Roll bands and dancers), students, film producers… they take Amphetamine or different forms of it for the benefit of have improved performances on their tasks; they have increased energy levels, higher mental alertness, and temporary elimination of fatigue without having to rest.

However, as knowledge and experience on this drug accumulates, it is found that it leads to a great number of side effects and adverse effects, including restlessness, headache, blurred vision, anxiety, depression, paranoia… just to name a few. The body also develops dependency on the drug, resulting in severe withdraw symptoms once discontinued.

Richard Fee is a 24 year old college student from Virginia Beach who fell victim to Amphetamine addiction. Like many of his friends in school, he takes Adderall; a Amphetamine-based drug, so that he can stay awake for many hours working on his assignments the night before their due date. On those nights he managed to stay awake for 6 hours with better concentration and sharper thoughts, so it “worked”. Unfortunately and unavoidably, he became addicted, unable to stop taking the drug. He visited psychiatrists telling of his faked symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (A.D.H.D.) so that he could get prescriptions of the drug (he is an intelligent young man that plans on taking Medicine in college, thus he knows for A.D.H.D. he will be given Adderall). His doses increased overtime, and severe side effects developed, including: illusions, depression, anxiety, uncontrollable rage… he became mentally ill, to the point that he was unable to carry out his normal daily activities. Eventually, it is tragic that he hung himself inside his closet after stopping the drug, because that resulted in severe withdraw symptoms. This intelligent young man was destroyed by Amphetamine.

Learning from this painful experience, we see that prohibited or strictly-controlled drugs are not the tools for solving problems, but rather, are the creators of problems, with outcomes as severe as death. We should tell doctors the truth regarding our symptoms and other problems, so that they can take correct measures to help us. Also, parents care a lot about their children, so we should openly discuss our problems with them, for they will do their best to help and protect us; all they need is our honesty and cooperation. Manage our time well, too, so we don’t end up being stressed out on the night before the school assignment is due. We should leave lots of time and room by completing assignments well ahead of their due date; this way we will have extra time for review and revision, which should result in a better grade. Even if you have tried hard but still are unable to get your assignment done on time, don’t push too hard on yourself because problems may result; in Richard’s case he got addicted to a strictly-controlled drug. It is life that sometimes things don’t work out; the worse is just that you will need to retake the course. You may get a better grade on it, too, for you already have certain knowledge or experience on the course. If failure persists, it is not the end of the world; you still have learned something; at least you have gained some knowledge and experience by having completed the course. It is better than to push yourself so hard to the point of getting harmed, as seen in Richard’s case. If you believe you will be better off by ending your life, stop! go to a hospital emergency clinic for immediate professional medical care. Doctors will be able to help you.

Currently Amphetamine is prohibited or strictly controlled internationally, including within the countries of the US, Canada, Japan; and many others. Failure to comply usually results in fines and imprisonment.

Thus, despite immediate short term positive effects, the damage inflicted by taking Amphetamine is tremendous. Is it worth taking the drug? The answer is obvious; no one should ever take prohibited or strictly-controlled drugs for reasons other than medical treatment.

Photo by AKARAKINGDOMS ( | Source

Points to Remember

  • Don’t ever try to take any illegal or strictly-controlled drugs; they create problems rather than being the ways to solve problems.
  • Always be truthful to your doctor and other medical personnel; tell them what your symptoms or weaknesses are; they are professionals that can give you good advises and help you.
  • Discuss your problems with your parents; they are eager to help you.
  • Manage your time well (i.e. don’t leave your assignments until the last minute)
  • Accept failure; you have already tried your best. Next time you will do better having gone through failure; it is the process of learning.
  • If you decide to commit suicide, go to a hospital emergency clinic for immediate professional care; doctors there will be able to help you.


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    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 5 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      i was addicted to pain killers too when i have bad toothache and gum pain. When i knew that i can't stop the pain unless i have the pill, i stopped and resort to home remedies. Thanks for the reminder. Voted up