What are stimulants?

Stimulants (psychostimulants) are a class of natural and pharmaceutical chemicals which produce a short-term boost to one or more intellectual or physical capacities in the user. This might reveal as enhanced speed or reflexes, greater vigilance, or prudence when the user would typically be dozing or asleep. Stimulants have been called ‘uppers’ to differentiate them from ‘downers’ (depressants or sedatives). 

Impacts of Stimulants

Stimulant medicines, including Dexedrine and Adderall (dextroamphetamine), and Ritalin and Concerta (methylphenidate) act in the brain, mimicking the effect of monoamines, such as dopamine and norepinephrine, which are critical brain neurotransmitters. Stimulant activity affects enhancement of these neurotransmitters in the brain tissue.There is no simplistic list of stimulant consequences, as there are so many diverse types, many of which cause these outcomes in vastly different ways. Stimulants typically enhance or grow nervous activity, in either or both the central and peripheral nervous system.

Joint effects of some (but by no means all) stimulants include:

  • Reduction in exhaustion
  • Limited need for sleep
  • Physical or sexual arousal
  • Lessening of anxiety
  • Absence of appetite
  • Raised endurance
  • Expanded blood pressure
  • Recovered mood
  • High heart rate
  • Greater richness
  • Greater or more profound appreciation
  • Thinking more motivated
  • Alertness
  • Desirable euphoria

Many of these conclusions are adapted to dosage level. For example, certain amphetamines may cause a decrease of hyperactivity and mild euphoria at small doses but increased anxiety, hyperactivity and heart trouble at higher doses.

The Classification and Chemistry of Stimulants

Stimulants arrive at their impacts in the figure through different routes. The most common pharmacological mechanism for stimulant consequences change the sufficient levels of dopamine or norepinephrine (adrenaline) in the body, or to agonize either the nicotinic or adenosine chemoreceptors.

Classification into categories is made hard as most stimulants can arguably be assigned to at least two types. For example, on a purely chemical structure level, ‘ecstasy’ is at the same time a substituted amphetamine, a substituted phenethylamine, and a substituted methylenedioxyphenethylamine.

Stimulants – Ampakines

The ampakine class of stimulants are grasped to increase sharpness and improve concentration span. They have been seen to enhance learning and memory in clinical trials.

Ampakines do not tend to have the ‘body’ effects of many stimulants, and may, consequently, be less prone to abuse and alcoholism because they do not have a strong effect on the dopamine policy. They do, however, sometimes compromise sleep quality.

Stimulants – Eugeroics

Eugeroic stimulants increase a patient’s alertness and cause attention. They seem to work by enhancing the activity or levels of dopamine or related substances in the brain, or the histaminic system.

They see use I treating certain sleep disorders such as narcolepsy, but also to enhance productivity and impulse. Many are seen to define their activity primarily to the hypothalamus, which controls insomnia and attention.

Examples of eugeroic drugs include:

  • Adrafinil
  • 2C-NPH
  • Hydrofoil
  • armodafinil
List of Stimulants