Washington: A new study has revealed that 'smart' drug Modafinil impairs performance in healthy kids, instead of boosting their ability to study like it claims to do.
The study carried out by Dr Ahmed Dahir Mohamed, in the School of Psychology at The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, found that the drug slowed down reaction times, impaired their ability to respond in a timely manner and failed to improve their performance of the task.
Dr Mohamed said it has been argued that Modafinil might improve your performance by delaying your ability to respond. It has been suggested this 'delay dependent improvement' might improve cognitive performance by making people less impulsive and they found no evidence to support those claims. The research showed that when a task required instant reactions the drug just increased reaction times with no improvement to cognitive performance.
When Dr Mohamed looked at participant's ability to problem solve in a creative manner he found that those who weren't particularly creative to start with were improved by the drug while those who were creative were impaired by the drug.
The researchers said that their study backs up previous research that suggests psychostimulants improve people at the lower end of the spectrum in cognition whereas they impair people who are at the optimum level of cognitive function-healthy people for example. It looks like Modafinil is not helpful for healthy individuals and it might even impair their ability to respond and might stifle their lateral thinking, while people who have some sort of deficiency in creativity are helped by the drug.
The study was published in journal PLOS ONE.